A prosecutor in South Bend is requesting a special prosecutor to investigate the fatal shooting of a black man by a white police officer that has roiled the campaign of mayor and Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg.
St. Joseph County Prosecutor Kenneth Cotter filed a petition Monday asking a judge to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the June 16 shooting of 54-year-old Eric Logan by South Bend police Sgt. Ryan O’Neill.
The petition requests a special prosecutor to “avoid any appearance of impropriety, conflict of interest or influence upon the ultimate prosecutorial decision to be made.”
Buttigieg said Sunday that he would write the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division and notify Cotter that he’d like an independent investigator appointed.
Below is the complete announcement from the St. Joseph County Prosecutor’s Office:
St. Joseph County –Today, Kenneth P. Cotter, the Prosecuting Attorney for the 60th
Judicial Circuit (St. Joseph County), filed paperwork with the St. Joseph County Circuit
Court requesting the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the fatal officerinvolved shooting of Eric J. Logan that occurred June 16, 2019 in South Bend, Indiana.
Pursuant to Indiana law, it will be the duty of the Special Prosecutor to review the
underlying investigation and determine if further investigation is warranted. When the
investigation is completed, it will also be the duty of the Special Prosecutor to determine
if criminal charges are warranted and to prosecute the matter to resolution should
charges be filed, or an indictment returned.
As noted in the attached petition, a Special Prosecutor appointment was requested to
“avoid any appearance of impropriety, conflict of interest or influence upon the ultimate
prosecutorial decision to be made.”
The petition refers the Court to the Executive Director of the Indiana Prosecuting
Attorneys Council (IPAC) for a list of qualified individuals to serve as Special Prosecutor.
At this time, the Court has not appointed a special prosecutor.
The St. Joseph County Metro Homicide Unit (CMHU) will transfer everything gathered
during its investigation to the Special Prosecutor.
South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieig issued the following statement regarding the request for a Special Prosecutor:
“I respect and support Prosecutor Cotter’s decision to seek an outside, special prosecutor to investigate the circumstances of Eric Logan’s death. Our community is in anguish, and for all of us to come to terms with what happened, it is vital that the investigation be fair, thorough, and impartial.”