Man killed by police officer at Duke Hospital in January was shot three times in back, documents reveal

The Chronicle has obtained additional information about what happened when a Duke University police officer shot and killed a man at Duke University Hospital in January.

Raishawn Jones died Jan. 14 in the emergency department. His name was released by ABC11 in February when his family came forward looking for answers about the shooting. Duke officials have declined to publicly release information about Jones or the shooting, as doing so would be a violation of Duke Health’s HIPAA policies.

Jones’ family lamented the lack of communication from Duke.

“At what point did he get unhandcuffed? It just doesn’t add up. It’s so hard for us,” Jones’ aunt Elizabeth Hemingway said to ABC11. 

The North Carolina Office of the Chief Medical Examiner released an autopsy report, investigation report and toxicology report to The Chronicle April 28 in response to a records request filed in February.

Jones got into a motor vehicle accident the night of Jan. 14 and was “acting strangely and irrationally at the scene,” the investigation report written Jan. 19 says. The autopsy says Jones was detained for erratic driving. 

His family told ABC11 he crashed into another car and then hit a wall at a nearby restaurant and that he was “on something.” The toxicology report shows that nicotine and phencyclidine (PCP) were detected in Jones’ system.

Jones was restrained and transported to the emergency room by Durham EMS and Durham police officer C.W. Stone via ambulance, the investigation report says. He reportedly requested to use the bathroom shortly after arrival, and upon having his handcuffs removed, he attacked Stone and took the officer’s handgun. 

As previously reported, Duke officers responded to a call for help from healthcare staff after 11:32 p.m. An official statement from the University Jan. 15 said Jones had a “loaded gun raised toward the Durham Police officer.” Witnesses said Jones had fired shots, and “two loud bangs” could be heard on 911 calls. 

Law enforcement told Jones to put the gun down, but Jones “ignored their orders and was subsequently shot several times in the back,” according to the investigation report. Jones’ autopsy reveals that he was shot three times, resulting in damage to his heart and other internal organs. The position of one of the gunshot wounds suggests Jones was bent at the waist when it occurred, the autopsy report says.

An injury “consistent with injury from a conducted electrical weapon barb” was also noted in the autopsy report. Previous reporting has not said whether Jones was tazed at any point.

Jones was immediately treated by trauma staff after the shooting but did not survive. Stone was treated for injuries and released from the hospital the same night, Sarah Avery, director of the Duke Health News Office, told The Chronicle Jan. 15. All involved officers were wearing body cameras, but the Durham Police Department said they would not petition for footage to be released.

The investigation report says Jones arrived at the emergency department around 10:30 p.m., was shot at 10:50 p.m. and was pronounced dead at 10:55 p.m. This timeline would be an hour earlier than previously reported by the News and Observer. 

The report also notes that there was a delay in transferring Jones’ body to the medical examiner due to the involvement of the State Bureau of Investigation in the case. Jones did not undergo an autopsy until Jan. 21, a week after his death. 

SBI Public Information Director Ajanette Grube informed The Chronicle in a May 3 email that the investigation is now pending review by the Durham district attorney, who will decide whether criminal charges are appropriate for the Duke officer involved. 

Sarah Willets, communication specialist for the Durham County District Attorney's office, wrote in an email to The Chronicle that there is no timeline for when a decision will be announced. 

Jones was laid to rest in Smithfield, N.C. Jan. 29.

Nadia Bey profile
Nadia Bey | Digital Strategy Director

Nadia Bey, Trinity '23, was managing editor for The Chronicle's 117th volume and digital strategy director for Volume 118.


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