Casey Goodson, 23, was fatally shot by a 17-year veteran of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department, identified as deputy Jason Meade, working for the US Marshal’s fugitive task force looking for violent offenders Friday. The victim was not the person being sought by the US Marshal’s Task Force, Columbus Police said.
CNN reached out to the Franklin Sheriff’s Office for comment but has not yet heard back.
“At this point, witness testimony and physical evidence raise serious concerns about why Casey was even confronted, let alone why he was shot dead while entering his own home,” Walton said.
Goodson had put his keys into his door before he was shot and fell into the kitchen, where his 5-year-old brother and his 72-year-old grandmother saw him lying on the ground with a Subway sandwich, the family’s attorney, Sean Walton, told CNN.
“Our demand is that the authorities provide the family with answers for Casey’s death and that the officer involved be held accountable. The family and the community demand swift justice for Casey Goodson.”
State agency won’t investigate
The Columbus Police Department (CPD), which was not involved in the shooting, is investigating the incident.
Columbus Police announced Monday afternoon that the investigation into the fatal shooting had been turned over to the Ohio BCI at the request of Columbus Police Chief Thomas Quinlan.
But only an hour later BCI, the state agency that investigates police involved shootings, announced that they would not be able to accept the case.
“We received a referral to take a three-day old officer-involved shooting case. Not knowing all the reasons as to why so much time has passed before the case was referred to BCI, we cannot accept this case,” a spokesperson for the Attorney General’s office said.
“BCI has an existing MOU (memorandum of understanding) with CPD, as they know that BCI is their first call when an incident occurs. BCI is the first call because we cannot be the subject matter experts unless we’re on scene from the beginning to document the evidence of what happened from the start,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said in a statement Monday. “Three days later after the crime scene has been dismantled and the witness(es) have all dispersed does not work.”
Columbus Police said Chief Quinlan’s interest in having BCI involved in the case was “based solely on reassuring the public of maximum independence in the investigation of this tragedy.”
The police department added that the chief “has complete faith in CPD’s Critical Incident Response Team to investigate this matter fully and fairly.”
Columbus Police continue to investigate the case and the attorney general’s decision to not take the case, “has not in any way interrupted the work to investigate the death of Casey Goodson,” CPD said.
An autopsy will be performed by the Franklin County Coroner, police said.
Family wants answers
Goodson, an Ohio concealed carry permit holder, was legally armed at the time of the shooting, according to CPD.
During the US Marshal’s Task Force operation in Columbus, Meade reported seeing a man with a gun and was investigating the situation when there was reportedly a verbal exchange prior to the shooting, CPD said.
According to CPD, no other officers witnessed the shooting, no civilian eyewitnesses have been identified, and there is no body camera footage of the actual shooting, because Franklin County Sheriff’s task force officers aren’t issued body cameras.
Family attorney Walton said the family wants to know why their loved one was killed, as Goodson is not alleged to have committed any crimes, has no criminal background and was not the target of any investigation.
“Casey was licensed to carry a concealed weapon and Ohio does not prohibit the open carrying of firearms,” Walton explained.
“The family of Casey Christopher Goodson, Jr. demands answers after Casey was shot and killed by a police officer,” Walton said in the statement. “Casey was an amazing young man whose life was tragically taken.”
“Even hours after his death, the keys that he used to let himself in the house as he was shot and killed hung in the door — a reminder to his family of how close he was to safety,” the attorney noted.