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Austin police officers cleared in August 2020 shooting

Officers Todd Gilbertson and Gordon Niels were involved in a shooting while trying to serve a warrant.
Credit: Austin Police Department
Deonte Lee Rogers, 30 (previous booking photo)

AUSTIN, Texas — A Travis County Special Grand Jury cleared two Austin Police Department officers regarding their involvement in an August 2020 shooting.

Officers Todd Gilbertson and Gordon Niels, assigned to the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force, reported to an apartment complex on Manor Road looking for a man named Deonte Rogers on Aug. 25, 2020. Rogers had a federal warrant for unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, and officers also wanted to question him about a homicide. 

Rogers ran from the apartment complex and fired six shots toward the two officers, who returned three shots each. Neither Rogers nor the officers were injured.

While Rogers escaped, he left his gun and cell phone on the ground near the fence he'd hopped over, and officers arrested him two weeks later in Atlanta. For shooting at the officers, Rogers received a 15-year federal prison sentence.

“The District Attorney’s office takes the work of presenting all facts and evidence to a grand jury very seriously,” said José Garza, Travis County District Attorney. “In this case, an independent group of members of the Travis County community heard the evidence and law and decided that Officers Gilbertson and Neils’s conduct was not unlawful.”

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