State police say they shot and killed a Fleming County man who they say was threatening troopers with a firearm.
James Hay's grieving family says the gun was unloaded, and they called the police murderers.
Thursday afternoon Fleming County Deputies were called to Hay's home for a domestic disturbance. State police say the situation escalated. KSP says the Fleming County Deputies called for their help. When the state police arrived, they say Hay confronted them with a firearm.
"What they tried to do was de-escalate the situation. They were communicating with that individual to drop his weapon. It was communicated for about an hour to try to de-escalate, and as a result he would not comply," said Trooper Endre Samu, State Police.
Trooper Samu says Hay made the situation more tense.
"When he came out of the residence he was yelling verbal comments as well as demonstrating that he possessed a weapon, and was pointing it at the officer," said Samu.
He says that's when State Police fired, and ultimately killed Hay. This is the rule of engagement for KSP:
"If you make a direct threat with a weapon at an officer, you're going to bet with the same in kind," said Samu.
Samu says when a target is moving, troopers are trained to aim at the center of the body. As part of standard procedure, the troopers involved are on administrative leave while KSP investigates the lethal shooting.
Hay's family says they want James to be remembered as nothing other than a decorated Marine with 15 years of service.