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Wrong man shot by local officer tells story for first time

Wrong man shot by local officer tells story for first time

(KUTV) A bystander and witness, shot and badly wounded by a Unified Police officer last fall, is telling his account for the first time.

I am not vengeful at all," said Dustin Evans said in an interview on Wednesday, but added, "I've been out of work for eight months. I won't ever do the same job I did before."

Evans, a refinery laborer, went to a car wash in Midvale one night last October, but he saw much more than soap and water.

"I can see a guy walking backwards and just shooting," Evans said.

The gunman targeted a police officer, shooting more than a half dozen shots, shattering glass on the patrol car, and one bullet lodged in the officer's vest.

Officer Cory Tsouras drove away from the gunman, lost sight of the suspect, and then spotted Evans, whom he thought had fired the shots, as Evans was trying to open a door to take cover in the car wash office.

"The bullet entered the rear of my leg, right here," said Evans, showing a large scar. The other shot hit him in the left hand.

He did not feel the shots, but said, "What I remember is the door shattering and me falling to the ground."

District Attorney Sim Gill called the shooting a "mistake" but said he will not file charges against the officer.

"The officer shot the wrong person," said Gill. "But it's important to recognize there was no criminal intent here."

Salt Lake County Sheriff Jim Winder was less than pleased with the DAs determination the shooting was not justified.

Winder said the officer had been shot at, a window had been blown out, the officer was trying to save lives including his own, and had to make decisions in a split second.

"Whether it was a mistake or not, it was the most unfortunate of circumstances we or any officer can ever be in," said Winder.

Evans said he can live with no criminal charges against the officer, but wants money for his pain.

"What's reasonable?"

"I don't know what's reasonable," Evans---who has had a half-dozen surgeries---replied. "I'm never going to be the same."

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