Ariz. officer indicted for death of knife-wielding shoplifting suspect in a wheelchair

After the November 2021 incident, Officer Ryan Remington was fired for excessive use of force after an internal investigation

By Amanda Spence

TUCSON, Ariz. — A former officer has been indicted on manslaughter charges after he allegedly shot an armed suspect in a wheelchair who was shoplifting in 2021.

Officer Ryan Remington allegedly shot the suspect, Richard Lee Richards, 61, who was in a motorized wheelchair, nine times while he was working security at Walmart on November 29, CBS News reported. Remington was approached by a loss prevention employee, who said a man in a mobility scooter had supposedly taken a toolbox. Both followed after Richards and they asked him for a receipt.

He reportedly replied, “Here’s my receipt,” and pulled a knife out. “If you want me to put down the knife, you're going to have to shoot me,” Richards supposedly said.

Remington then allegedly ordered the man to drop the weapon and not enter a nearby store. However, Richards ignored the order and was shot nine times by Remington. The incident was captured on the officer’s body camera. Remington was later fired for excessive use of force after an internal investigation.

Richards died on scene and, if convicted, Remington faces a sentence ranging from three to 12.5 years.

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