The investigation continues tonight into the police shooting of a mentally ill nineteen year old. The deadly shooting happened Tuesday and Wednesday the family met with Eugene's Police Chief and later sat down exclusively with our Carla Castano.
The parents of Ryan Salisbury say their son had lost all control of himself, destroying their home and threatening to stab himself they knew they needed help from police, but they never thought Ryan would be shot. Looking at pictures of Ryan Salisbury you would never know he struggled with extreme cases of bi-polar and anxiety disorders. His mental illness started abruptly, months before his 18th birthday.
Ryan's father, Jeff Salisbury says "from then to the present it's been a series of good times and bad times the good time we see the Ryan that we know and love we see the smile the sweet love he has for his brothers for his parents."
Over the last couple of weeks Ryan struggled with deep depression and his medications had been increased.
Tuesday morning, his parents say they called 911 because Ryan was in a psychotic state, they feel it was triggered by high doses of prescription drugs and his overwhelming frustration.
Ryan's mother, Denise Salisbury says, "he had a kitchen knife and he threatened if I came near him he would stab himself in the stomach he never threatened us."
When Eugene police arrived they first tried to stop Ryan with bean bag bullets. Jeff Salisbury says, "there were 6 non lethal shots fired and 5 lethal shots fired my wife witnessed those shots much to our sadness."
The Salisbury's say they aren't mad at police but it is hard to understand why a tazor couldn't have been used.
"Even the police chief said that that might well have made a difference with Ryan," Jeff Salisbury tells us.
A representative with Eugene Police day says tazors would have been a nice option if they had been available, but the department does not use them. whether or not it would have made a difference they believe is speculative. The Salisbury's say Ryan last saw his psychologist a week ago and was taking his prescribed medications.
They hope people will understand their son was a wonderful person who had a serious disorder and that many people who are bi-polar live healthy, productive lives.
The three officers involved in the shooting are on paid administrative leave and the Lane County District Attorney's office is investigating the shooting.