Mont. trial begins in case of boy shot by officers

November 2, 2011 - 12:30 PM

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A police officer training instructor testified that a Montana Highway Patrol trooper and a sheriff's deputy failed to follow their agencies' policies and procedures and inappropriately used deadly force in shooting a 13-year-old boy.

Public Safety Officers Standards and Training program instructor Alan Baxter testified in Helena Tuesday at a civil negligence trial in a lawsuit filed by the mother of Mark Keeley, who was fatally shot by the officers in April 2007 near Fort Benton.

Baxter told jurors that neither officer should have engaged in a chase over the theft of $8 in gasoline, and that the officers should have tried to negotiate with the boy rather than approach him.

The trooper testified he felt both officers' lives were in danger after the boy shot at them.