Grand jury to decide whether to charge officer in shooting

    Family members of William Panas say the shooting Sergeant Frank Tepper shot Panas without reason during a November 21 street fight in Port Richmond.

    A grand jury will determine whether the city should move forward with charges against an off-duty Philadelphia police officer in connection with the shooting of a Port Richmond man last month.

    Listen:
    [audio: 091203tmshoot.mp3]

    Family members of William Panas say Sergeant Frank Tepper shot Panas without reason during a November 21 street fight in Port Richmond. Tepper says the shooting was self-defense.

    District Attorney Lynne Abraham says she spoke to Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey before calling on the Grand Jury to investigate the case to find out what actually happened.

    Abraham: The commissioner and I are of the same mind, that both he and the Philadelphia Police department and we in the District Attorney’s Office and the public interest are best served by the careful, through investigation by an investigating grand jury.

    There will also be a separate Internal Affairs investigation of the shooting. Sergeant Tepper has been assigned to desk duty until the investigation is complete.

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