VIDEO: Tulsa Police Shoot Out

After a sergeant deployed pepperball rounds, the suspect returned fire with a .38

By Calibre Press  |   Jul 24, 2018


The Tulsa Police Department has officially identified the officers involved in last week’s shooting outside a local QuikTrip.

Sgt. Michael Parsons, who has been with the law-enforcement agency since 1993, was shot in the leg during a traffic stop in the parking lot of the convenience store July 3. He was released from the hospital that evening and is now on medical leave.

Officer Michael Caweizell was the officer who shot the suspect, John Terry Chatman Jr., during the encounter. Caweizell, who is part of the TPD organized gang unit, was placed on routine administrative leave pending an investigation of the shooting.

Neither officer had a reported complaint history. 

The agency no longer release names of officers involved in shootings within 48 to 72 hours, police spokesman Shane Tuell said. The change reportedly is to allow the case to be presented to the District Attorney’s Office, which is responsible for determining whether the shooting is justified, before the names are released as a safety precaution.

Tuell said officers sometimes receive threats from the public after being named in the aftermath of a shooting.

A man who authorities say shot a police officer outside a QuikTrip in early July was charged Wednesday, the same day body-worn camera video of the shooting was released.

The defendant, John Terry Chatman Jr., was seriously injured when police returned fire.

Tulsa County prosecutors charged Chatman, 34, with three counts of shooting with intent to kill, possession of a firearm after a felony conviction, obstruction, driving under suspension and driving with an improper tag. Tulsa police officials subsequently released body-worn camera footage from the two officers who initiated a traffic stop with Chatman.

“We tried every option we could in that close proximity to get him to get out,” Tulsa Police Sgt. Shane Tuell said.

Chatman is accused of shooting at three Tulsa police officers — Officers M. Cawiezell and D. Bean and Sgt. M. Parsons — during a traffic stop on July 3, according to a probable cause affidavit.

About 15 minutes elapsed between the time the traffic stop was initiated and when Chatman shot at the two Gang Unit officers, Cawiezell and Bean, and the patrol sergeant, Parsons. Parsons was struck once in the thigh, according to the affidavit. Leading up to that time, the officers were trying to talk Chatman out of the vehicle, Tuell said.

“At the point when he says, ‘Just shoot me,’ it was apparent he was not going to be getting out of the vehicle.”

At that time the sergeant escalated to a less-lethal use of force and fired pepper balls at Chatman, Tuell said. Chatman responded by shooting at the officers with a pistol, hitting the sergeant’s leg, police said.

“As soon as Sgt. Parsons deployed the pepper balls, Chatman obtained a .32-caliber revolver handgun … and fired four times,” an investigator wrote in the affidavit.

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