Details of Sparta officer involved shooting released - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Details of Sparta officer involved shooting released


SPARTA, Wisconsin (WXOW) - We now know more about the officer involved fatal shooting of a 21-year-old man on October 4 in Sparta.

Sparta Police Chief Michael Kass released a statement Tuesday afternoon.

He identified the man as John Bartholomew of Sparta.

According to Chief Kass, shortly after 9:00 p.m. on Friday, October 4, Sgt. Booker Ferguson was sent to a home at 1008 S. Fairway Drive for a report of a disturbance involving Bartholomew.  The caller wanted him removed from the home after he'd been drinking and became argumentative.

The investigation showed that following the call to police, Bartholomew took some knives and was threatening the caller and another family member.  Still armed, he went outside when he saw Sgt. Ferguson arrive.

The statement said that Bartholomew began moving towards the officer.  Sgt. Ferguson told Bartholomew to drop the knives, and when he failed to do that, and continued towards the officer, he was shot.

First aid was performed on Bartholomew until he could be transported by ambulance to Mayo Clinic Health System in Sparta.  He later died from the gunshot wounds.

Chief Kass said that the state Deparment of Justice-Division of Criminal Investigation continues to investigate the shooting.

Sgt. Ferguson, a ten year veteran of the department, is on administrative leave during the investigation.

In January, 2012, Sgt. Ferguson was the officer who shot and wounded a man outside a home in Sparta. 19-year-old Jacob Olson was carrying a rifle outside his home when Sgt. Ferguson ordered him to drop it. When Olson pointed the rifle in Sgt. Ferguson's direction, he was shot by the officer. Olson survived the encounter. The investigation into the shooting showed Sgt. Ferguson was justified in firing at Olson.


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