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Man shot by EPD officer was holding fake gun

Evansville Police say a man shot by an officer was carrying a fake gun. 


Officers were dispatched to a possible rape on Spring Valley Road, off North Green River at about 6:40 Wednesday evening. 

Officers were told by the victim that the suspect was armed with a handgun and had left, but said he would return. 

While officers were on the scene, the suspect did return.

Police Sgt. Jason Cullum told reporters the man ran from officers and went around the corner of a building…

"So now, you went from a very visible area to you don't know what you're going to encounter when you turn that corner. When that officer runs up to the corner and turns in the matter of about a second and a half, he levels his weapon toward the suspect, gives three different commands: hands, show your hands, drop it. And then the first shot rings out."

Cullum said the officer shot 48-year-old Michael Anthony Foster of Evansville 4-to-6 times.

Cullum said there was no way the officer could tell Foster was carrying a replica firearm…

"If you were using those replica firearms to intimidate people, you're running through neighborhoods, you know the police are coming toward you, and you put it in your hand, you've made the decision to put yourself in a deadly force encounter."

Cullum said the encounter was caught on body cam, but the footage hasn’t been released yet. Neither has the officer’s name.

Foster was being treated at a hospital under police guard.

Cullum said Foster has a lengthy record, and failed to register as a sex offender several times.

Cullum also said Foster behaved in a similar fashion with a sheriff’s deputy in 2014, when he was armed with a bb gun.