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Army Veteran Fatally Shot By Eugene Police Officer

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The man fatally shot by a Eugene Police officer Monday was an Army veteran who served in Afghanistan in 2006. The Chief of Police spoke publicly about the incident Wednesday.

Eugene Police were called to the home of 49-year-old Brian Babb by his therapist who said the veteran was in emotional distress and suicidal. He had fired a shot inside the home. Nobody was injured. His roommate safely got out after police arrived in an armored vehicle. Police Chief Pete Kerns says while assessing the situation with a crisis negotiator, Babb allegedly came to the front door with a rifle.

Chief Kerns: "Mr. Babb aimed or pointed a rifle at the officer and the officer responded by shooting on Mr. Babb. The armored vehicle was more than a hundred feet away, I've heard an estimate that it might have been as much as two-hundred feet away. It was immediately driven to the front door so they could render aid to Mr. Babb, but apparently it was pretty clear that he had died."

The officer involved in the shooting is on paid administrative leave and his name has not yet been released. Findings of the investigation will be forwarded to the Lane County District Attorney's Office to determine if the officer's actions were lawful. Chief Kerns says his department spoke with the Veterans Administration in Eugene about the incident. He hopes anyone, whether or not they're a veteran, will seek help if they're in crisis. Brian Babb graduated from Oregon State University in 1994. He was a divorced father with two children.

Angela Kellner is the KLCC host of All Things Considered and a reporter. Angela began as a KLCC volunteer in 1991 when she was in high school. While a student at Lane Community College, she was hired in 1993 for a work-study position in the KLCC Music Department and has been with the station in some role since then. Angela hosted KLCC's world music program Tropical Beat for 11 years from 1994 to 2005 and continues to fill in on a monthly basis.