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Pair Of District Attorneys Made Ruling

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine -- A pair of district attorneys have concluded that two South Portland police officers were legally justified in using deadly force during a standoff with a suicidal man.

The victim, Michael Norton, died from a single gunshot early on Aug. 25 after officers were called to his home to check on him.

Police had taken Norton to a hospital psychiatric unit 24 hours earlier after his family said he threatened suicide, but he checked himself out the following day.

During the fatal confrontation, one officer fired his rifle and another fired a less-lethal beanbag when Norton advanced on officers with a knife in each hand.

Normally, the use-of-force conclusions are reached by the attorney general. But District Attorneys Evert Fowle and Geoffrey Rushlau were asked to evaluate the evidence because one of the officers is married to an employee in the attorney general's office.
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