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Use of force by officers justified in fatal shooting of woman in February, DA Zappala says

PITTSBURGH — District Attorney Stephen Zappala has determined the use of deadly force by Pittsburgh police in the shooting death of a woman earlier this year was justified.

Zappala released a statement and police body cam video of the incident to support his decision.

The first video shows officers responding to a report of a trespasser at an abandoned home in Allentown.

Officer: Ma’am are you up there? Pittsburgh Police. Ma’am are you upstairs, it’s the police. Come on outside.

Officers are then heard speaking with the woman, identified as Adrienne Arrington.

Arrington tells officers to come in.

Arrington: Come in.

Officer: No, you come out.

Arrington: You come in.

At that exact moment, according to the DA, Arrington is heard firing a shot from inside the home.

Officers dive for cover behind a car and call for backup.

Arrington fires six more shots from inside the home.

Some of those shots were captured on body cam and released Friday by the district attorney.

Officer: Where is that shot coming from?

Officer: Behind the house.

Eventually, Arrington comes out of the abandoned home holding a .38 caliber revolver in her hand as police plead with her to get on the ground and drop the gun.

Officer: Get on the ground. Lower your hands. Get on the ground.

In a video statement also released by the District Attorney’s office, Zappala said the body cam video and even a ring doorbell camera just across the street captures the moment as Arrington points the gun at police.

Officers opened fire, striking her five times, and killing her.

Zappala determined that the use of deadly force by police in this case was justified.

“In evaluating a police officer’s actions, the most important thing is to determine whether or not the officers’ actions were taken in response to a legitimate and compelling threat. Our police are trained to protect our community, and they are prepared to respond to deadly force with deadly force,” said Zappala in that video released by his office.

Zappala said at one time the abandoned house had belonged to Arrington’s family and she would still occasionally return and stay there.

Zappala said her brother had died in that house.

He also said Arrington had some mental health issues and her blood alcohol content at the time of the shooting was more than five times the legal limit.

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