Officer who shot 15-year-old boy back on the job

Officer who shot 15-year-old boy back on the job
Terrance Shaw
Terrance Shaw
Justin Thompson
Justin Thompson

(WMC-TV) - A Memphis Police officer who killed a 15-year-old boy is back on the job tonight. But there are a lot of questions about his return to the force.

A memo was prepared to explain the reasoning behind allowing Terrance Shaw to be back on duty.

Here is a portion of that memo:

"The preliminary review of the shooting did not give any prima facie indication that MPD administrative policies had been violated. There would have been administrative policy violations if there was an indication of criminal wrongdoing on the part of Officer Shaw. In the absence of findings by TBI of violations of the law there are no pending administrative charges against Officer Shaw. It is my understanding that this served at least in part as the basis for placing Officer Shaw in a non-enforcement post."

Meanwhile, the police union says, as it has all along, that there should be no rush to judgment.

Although his family moved out of the neighborhood weeks ago, the pile of teddy bears, well wishes, and thoughtful prayers remain stacked on the street corner where 15-year-old Justin Thompson was shot and killed on September 24.

Terrance Shaw, the off-duty Memphis Police Officer who pulled the trigger, returned to work December 8.

He is on non-enforcement status, assigned to the real-time crime center where he will have no contact with the public.

Memphis Police Association president Mike Williams says Shaw was on paid leave longer than most officers involved in a shooting.

"There is a process and I don't think the department has deviated from the process," said Williams.

The TBI says its investigation is still ongoing and there is no time frame on when it may be complete because they are currently waiting on crime lab reports to complete the case file for the district attorney general to review.

Williams notes Shaw has not been charged with a crime or convicted. He says he deserves due process no matter how long it takes.

"If in fact that young man was killed needlessly then that needs to be brought out," he said. "But at the same time we also have to realize that there are normally three sides to a story. There's the officer's side, the young man's side, and then the truth. The investigation is supposed to reveal the truth."

Williams notes that the city has been paying Shaw all along for doing nothing, now at least he is working.

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