Each member of the SRB was given a sheet that contained the two questions they had been tasked with answering. Despite all five members having had reservations about Donald’s decisions, the Board was unanimous that he followed OPD policy. The following is their complete responses:
Question #1: Did the force used by the officer adhere to the policies of the Olympia Police Department?
Lt. Aaron Jelcick: Yes. All uses of force by Officer Donald were within policy.
Edward Prince: Yes, I examined all uses of force in this incident & they all comply w/ OPD policy.
Deputy City Attorney Darren Nienaber: Yes.
Officer Jason Winner: All uses of force evaluated on this review are within the policies of the Olympia Police Department.
Chief Steve Nelson: Yes. I believe Officer Donald used force due to the life-threatening actions of the suspects in this case.
Question #2: Did the actions of the officer precipitate the course of events that ultimately led to the use(s) of force? If so, were those actions reasonable and appropriate?
Lt. Aaron Jelcick: No. Officer Donald’s actions did not precipitate the course of events that led to the use of force, however, during the initial contact Officer Donald’s decision to reduce the distance between himself and the suspects increased his safety risk.
Edward Prince: No, however I believe Officer Donald made a tactical error by moving to the rear of the car which contributed to the assault in the first use of force. In my opinion all other uses of force stem from the first incident. Subjects were aggressive from initial contact when Officer Donald first made contact with them.
Deputy City Attorney Darren Nienaber: No. Due to the ambiguity of this question, this clarification is offered: going to the back of the car may have increased the risk of attack on him more than needed during their first contact with him.
Officer Jason [sic, should be effecting]: No, Officer Donald was affecting a lawful purpose during his initial contact with both suspects. Although his choice to place himself in closer proximity to the suspects on the initial contact may have contributed to him being assaulted – it only contributed in placing him in a proximity to the suspects that allowed them the opportunity to begin assaulting Officer Donald. Ultimately the use of force, however, was precipitated by both suspects’ assaultive behavior. The use of force, therefore, was in response to each suspects’ motions displaying life-threatening behavior.
Chief Steve Nelson: No, Officer Donald lawfully attempted to stop suspects in this case even though significant warning signs were present. After non-compliance with his verbal commands to stop were ignored. He approached both suspects to continue verbal commands but put himself too close to them tactically. They turned, lunged and grabbed his arm which precipitated the use of deadly force.