Billings police officer cleared in deadly casino shooting

BILLINGS (AP) — A Montana police officer has been cleared in the deadly shooting of a man who had claimed he was armed with hostages at a casino.

The Billings Gazette reports the jury for the coroner’s inquest determined Thursday that Billings police Sgt. Bret Becker was justified in shooting 44-year-old Shawn Michael Hubbard.

Hubbard had entered Lucky Lil’s Casino in April 2018 armed with a pellet gun that witnesses testified had looked like a real handgun.

Becker testified that he told Hubbard multiple times to put his hands up and to drop his gun.

He said he fired on Hubbard when the man stated he would shoot.

The medical examiner determined Hubbard died of two gunshot wounds to the chest. Hubbard had methamphetamine and methadone in his system.