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Prosecutor gets Kajieme Powell case; police seek no charges against officers

Footage of cell phone video of the Aug. 20, 2014, death of Kajieme Powell
Video provided by St. Louis Metropolitan Police

The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department has finished investigating the August death of a man shot by police after allegedly charging them with a knife, and turned the files over to Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce for a review.

The police department did not request any criminal charges against the officers who shot and killed 25-year-old Kajieme Powell on Aug. 19. The two were responding to reports of a shoplifting at Riverview and McLaran avenues in the city's North Point neighborhood. The shop owner and another witness, Alderman Dionne Flowers, both told police that Powell was carrying a knife.

The SLMPD's homicide detectives and its new Force Investigative Unit both looked at Powell's death. Those dual investigations may account for the six-month gap between the shooting and Tuesday's announcement.

In a written statement, Joyce, the prosecutor, promised an "independent and thorough review of all of the facts of Mr. Powell's death. As a completely separate entity, the Police Department's findings do not, in any way, dictate the actions to be taken by my office."

This is the second fatal police shooting sent to prosecutor Jennifer Joyce for review. Her office is also examining the October death ofVonDerritt Myers. A spokeswoman for the prosecutor said there was no time frame for finishing the review.

In October, an attorney for Powell's family, Jermaine Wooten, said he was prepared to sue the city over the fatal shooting. There are no online court records of such a suit ever being filed, and Wooten did not immediately return a call for comment.

Follow Rachel Lippmann on Twitter: @rlippmann

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.