Coroner Holds Inquest Into Fatal Christmas Eve Police Shooting
GREENSBURG (KDKA) — The Westmoreland County Coroner held an inquest Friday into the fatal shooting of a Hempfield man on Christmas Eve.
Jeffrey Yohman, 51, was shot and killed by police when they responded to a domestic dispute at his home.
The purpose of the inquest is for Westmoreland County Coroner Ken Bacha to gather evidence about the shooting to make sure the use of fatal force was justified.
Greensburg attorney John Greiner served as the hearing officer. He heard testimony from five state troopers and also tapes of chilling 911 calls made by Yohman’s wife and daughter.
State police say Yohman pushed Trooper John Fritz headfirst over a railing causing him to fall around 8-feet to the ground. He suffered a large gash to his eye and a scrape to his forehead.
He called for backup as Yohman went back into the house to retrieve a gun.
State police say Yohman was standing on a side porch holding a handgun with a large barrel. There were six bullets found in the handgun and another 13 sitting on the porch. Yohman continually told police officers that he would kill them.
When Yohman pointed his gun at Trooper John Isoldi, Isoldi fired his AK-15 rifle striking Yohman in the chest and abdomen.
State police say Yohman was armed with a gun powerful enough to kill a grizzly bear.
The hearing officer will now review the evidence and make a recommendation to the coroner as to whether any criminal charges should be filed.
The coroner will then make an announcement regarding his decision. All indications are that the shooting will be found to be justified.