A Washington Terrace man was shot and killed by Weber County a sheriff’s deputy early Saturday while police were trying to talk the man out of taking his own life.
An apparently distraught Jeff Foote, 39, placed a 911 call to police just before 1 a.m. and told a dispatcher that he planned to shoot himself, the sheriff’s office said in a news release.
Officers from multiple police agencies went to the home Foote shared with his parents, 110 W. 4600 South, to find him standing in the front yard, brandishing a small handgun.
One Weber County deputy tried to calm Foote and prevent him from attempting suicide. As they spoke, however, Foote apparently discharged his gun and an officer returned fire, Weber County Chief Deputy Klint Anderson said. No other shots were fired.
Foote, who was struck in the neck, was taken to an Ogden-area hospital where he died. His body was transferred to the Utah State Medical Examiner’s Office later Saturday for an autopsy.
It wasn’t immediately clear if Foote was trying to harm police when he fired his weapon, but Anderson said the deputy who returned fire feared for the safety of officers on the scene, Anderson said.
The unidentified officer has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of two investigations.
The Weber County Attorney’s Office is conducting an independent investigation of the shooting and will determine whether the officer was justified in his use of deadly force. The sheriff’s office will also conduct an internal investigation.
At the time of his death, Foote was on probation for a drug offense.
According to 2nd District Court records, he was arrested in November after a witness reported he and another man were using a meth pipe in a vehicle at a Riverdale motel. A police officer found a pipe in Foote’s backpack and several baggies of suspected drugs in the vehicle.
Foote was charged with second-degree felony drug possession, but pleaded guilty in April to a lesser third-degree felony count of drug possession.
Court records show he also has convictions for driving under the influence in 1996 and 2010.