CAPE CORAL, Fla.- An internal investigation has cleared two Cape Coral Police Officers in the June 24th shooting of Mark Alan Chernin.
On June 24th, Officers Andrew Miller and Matthew Mills were among several officers who responded to a report of an armed man walking in the 2200 block of SE 15th Street. Officers received calls that the armed man, later identified as Mark Alan Chernin, had already fired shots and was walking down the street still armed with a rifle.
Officers set up a perimeter around the neighborhood and located Chernin, who was indeed standing on SE 15th Street. Chernin was holding a Ruger .223 rifle, had a .40 caliber pistol in his waistband and a .45 caliber pistol on a leg holster.
Officers Miller and Mills attempted a dialogue with Chernin and ordered him to drop the guns. Chernin refused and began to raise the rifle in the direction of the officers. Officers Mills and Miller fired at Chernin, striking him. Chernin died on scene from his injuries.
As is standard, an investigation into the shooting ensued. The State Attorney’s Office concluded that the shooting was justified. “Based upon the investigative reports provided and the applicable law, I am convinced that the actions of the officers involved in this incident were a legally justifiable use of deadly force, in the defense of themselves or others. Therefore my office will not be filing any criminal charges in this matter”-Stephen B. Russell, State Attorney.
A subsequent internal investigation by the Cape Coral Police Professional Standards Bureau concluded that the shooting was within policy. Officers Miller and Mills have returned to full duty.