Judge overturns firing of Chattanooga Police Officer

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CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – A judge has reinstated Police Officer Brian Cottell who was fired for his actions at a suicide case.

The department fired him after he shot a dying man who had just shot himself.

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In 2018, officers responded to a call of a man threatening suicide.

When they entered the room, officers say the man pointed his gun at them.

There was a tense standoff while officers told him to drop the weapon.



But when Cottell turned the gun and shot himself in the chest, Officer Cottell fired three shots.

One of them hit the man in the leg.

The medical examiner determined the man died from his own gunshot, not the officer’s.

The police department fired Cottell for a violation of their Firearm Discharge Policy.

But the judge ruled that he did not, in fact, violate that policy.

He ordered Cottell reinstated with back pay and benefits.