Grand Jury clears officers involved in Grant Boulevard shooting

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Two officers who were involved in the shooting of a man on December 31 have been cleared of any wrongdoing by an Onondaga County Grand Jury.

Michael Viola, 22, of Syracuse, was shot by Syracuse police officers Brandon Hanks and Joseph LeBlanc after he charged at them with a hatchet.

According to Onondaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick, police were called to 707 Grant Boulevard after a resident of the house said a man was acting strangely. When officers arrived on the scene, they found Viola with a hatchet. Viola charged at the officers, and officers shot him.

Viola was injured in the shooting and has since been charged with menacing a police officer and criminal possession of a weapon and is being held at the Onondaga County Justice Center on $25,000 cash or $50,000 bond.

According to the District Attorney’s office, Viola has a criminal record including robbery charges after robbing a man at gunpoint in 2018.

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