Scott County

Investigation: Bullet that paralyzed Scott County deputy was fired by law enforcement

A bullet that struck and mostly paralyzed a deputy last September was fired by a law enforcement weapon, according to a statement released Wednesday by the Scott County Sheriff’s Office.

The Kentucky State Police Critical Incident Response Team investigated the shooting that injured Scott County Deputy Jaime Morales. The investigation concluded that Morales’ injuries came from a law enforcement weapon, but it was not clear which weapon, according to the sheriff’s office.

The shooting occurred at a rest area off Interstate 75 on Sept. 11 in Scott County. Sheriff’s deputies and Georgetown police officers were called to assist U.S. Marshals in apprehending a 57-year-old robbery suspect out of Florida named Edward Reynolds.

Reynolds was killed during the shooting.

Members of a special response team were approaching Reynolds’ vehicle at the rest stop when he was “alerted to their presence” and tried to drive away, according to the sheriff’s office.

Deputies and police officers gave multiple commands for Reynolds to stop his vehicle. Law enforcement officers from both agencies blocked Reynolds’ escape, and he pointed a handgun at the officers, according to the sheriff’s office.

Officers and deputies with both agencies then opened fire on Reynolds, according to the sheriff’s office.

The state police investigation concluded that “while Reynolds presented a deadly threat toward officers, he was incapacitated before he could actually fire his weapon,” according to Wednesday’s statement from the Scott County Sheriff’s Office.

“All the officers present that night were performing their duty in a tense and uncertain environment while attempting to apprehend a dangerous individual,” the sheriff’s office said in the statement. “The criminal actions of Mr. Reynolds led to the need of law enforcement to take him into custody for the safety of the general public. Mr. Reynolds then made the encounter a deadly force issue by raising his handgun and pointing it at the officers.”

The sheriff’s office also said that, had he survived the shooting, Reynolds would have been charged with assault in connection with Morales’ injuries.

“The Scott County Sheriff’s Office and the Georgetown Police Department ask for your continued support and your prayers,” the sheriff’s office said in the statement. “Our primary focus at this time is the recovery of Deputy Morales and all our officers and deputies.”

The state police investigation was presented to a Grand Jury on March 7, according to the sheriff’s office. The jury decided not to move forward with any charges.