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Tribe: Deputy Fatally Shoots Teen on Wisconsin Reservation

November 09, 2017 11:38 AM

The leader of a Lake Superior Chippewa tribe says a sheriff's deputy has fatally shot a 14-year-old boy on the tribe's reservation in northern Wisconsin.

Bad River Band Chairman Robert Blanchard says 14-year-old Jason Ike Pero was killed Wednesday in Odanah by an Ashland County sheriff's deputy. The Ashland County Sheriff's Office said its dispatchers received a call about a male subject walking down the street armed with a knife about 11:40 a.m. and a responding deputy fired shots, striking the suspect. The boy was pronounced dead at Memorial Medical Center in Ashland.

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Sheriff's officials say the deputy involved in the shooting was not injured.

His grandfather, Alan Pero, speaking to WDIO in Duluth, described Jason as someone who, "never had one mean bone in his body."

Jason's mother, Holly Gauthier also spoke to the station, saying Jason, "was a big teddy bear," and "everybody loved him." She added that he loved his family. 

She says there is "no reason you can justify shooting a 14-year-old boy."

She added her and her family are seeking justice for Jason. She said she believes he was murdered.

Jason was home sick from school on Wednesday, according to his mother, Holly. She says his dad picked Jason up from school and dropped him off at his grandparents' house.

According to Alan Pero, the neighbors say Jason only had a phone and that's all that they saw. Alan also says that according to doctors, there were two shots that hit Jason, one in the heart, and one in the right shoulder.

Jason's mother, Holly said she does not know why Jason was outside, or why he was shot, and says authorities haven't told her anything.

"The Tribal Council is deeply saddened and troubled by today's event, and they offer their condolences to the family at this time. This is an extremely hard day for everyone, in times like this the community must come together, and help each other heal. The Tribal Council would like the Bad River community to know that they are keeping abreast of the events and will release the information as it becomes available to them," the Bad River Tribal Government said in a news release.

Native Lives Matter has planned a vigil in Jason's honor for Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the Minneapolis American Indian Center on Franklin Avenue. 

The Wisconsin Department of Justice has been asked to investigate. Blanchard says state agents were at the reservation Thursday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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WDIO

(Copyright 2017 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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