- Kelsey Hawes
"After reading the reports, conferring with the detectives who headed up the CITF investigation, reviewing the evidence of the incident, and considering all relevant information, including the facts related above, I have concluded that there is insufficient evidence to support a criminal charge against any of the law enforcement officers involved in this incident for the shooting death of Marco Romero," wrote Twin Falls County Prosecuting Attorney Grant Loebs in a statement.
Romero, 33, was wanted in connection with a Nov. 8, 2016, double shooting in Meridian. Three days later, on Nov. 11, a tipster from the Bench Neighborhood alerted BPD to his presence there, and police conducted a yard-to-yard search for the suspect. A standoff and shootout between him and BPD officers left Romero dead and two officers—Cpls. Chris Davis and Kevin Holtry—seriously wounded. Jardo, a K9 police dog, died of his injuries five days later.
Davis was able to return to work last year. Holtry is still in recovery. According to Loebs, neither officer faces charges in relation to the incident.
The incident involving Romero was not the only officer-involved shooting in the Treasure Valley that day. Kuna police shot a 72-year-old Melba man involved in a police chase through Canyon and Ada counties on Nov. 10. When officers stopped the man's vehicle, they said he produced a weapon. Three officers opened fire on the man, who was later treated by paramedics at the scene and treated at a local hospital for what appeared to be non-life threatening injuries. Relatives of the man had reached out to law enforcement, believing he could harm himself. The officers involved in that shooting were cleared of wrongdoing in April by a Blaine County prosecutor who reviewed the case.
In a separate incident, also on Nov. 10, Caldwell police shot James Stell, 24, of Parma, as he exited a Caldwell home after a neighbor reported him attempting to break into a house. Stell was later treated at a local hospital and taken into custody upon his release. The officers involved were cleared of wrongdoing in May by an Ada County prosecutor who reviewed the CITF report on the incident.