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Michael Johansen talks about being shot by police officers and the recent arrest of Officer Wesley Cagle in the December shooting.
Michael Johansen talks about being shot by police officers and the recent arrest of Officer Wesley Cagle in the December shooting. (Lloyd Fox, Baltimore Sun)

Baltimore’s spending board is set to approve a $40,000 payment to a man who was shot by an on-duty Baltimore Police officer during a 2014 incident that also led to the officer’s conviction and imprisonment.

If approved by the Board of Estimates on Wednesday, the settlement would release the city and police department from further liability in the shooting of Michael Johansen by former officer Wesley Cagle, who in 2016 was convicted by a jury of first-degree assault and a gun offense in the shooting and sentenced to 12 years in prison.

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Johansen by his own admission had been planning to burglarize a store one night in December 2014 when several officers confronted and shot at him, grazing him and leading to his “dropping to the floor” and “declaring that he was unarmed,” according to a brief description of the events to be considered by the board. “As Johansen lay on his back, Cagle approached, stood over him, and deliberately fired his weapon at Johansen.”

Officer Wesley Cagle, center, walks to Courthouse West for his sentencing in the shooting of an unarmed man in December 2014.
Officer Wesley Cagle, center, walks to Courthouse West for his sentencing in the shooting of an unarmed man in December 2014. (Kevin Richardson / Baltimore Sun)

Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby said Cagle called Johansen a “piece of [expletive]” just before shooting him.

During the trial, Cagle testified that he shot at Johansen because he saw a shiny object that could have been a weapon. But prosecutors did not believe that theory, and nor did jurors.

“There was no need for him to take that final shot,” the jury foreman, Jerome Harper, told The Baltimore Sun after the trial.

Johansen suffered major injuries, losing a large stretch of his intestines and part of his kidney as a result of the shooting, according to trial testimony.

The $40,000 settlement was deemed prudent by the city attorneys to resolve litigation that Johansen has filed against the city and "avoid the expense, time, and uncertainty of further protracted proceedings,” the spending board’s agenda stated.

Michael Johansen looks down at the surgical scars he now has after being shot by police in December. He talks about being shot by police officers and the recent arrest of Officer Wesley Cagle in the December shooting.
Michael Johansen looks down at the surgical scars he now has after being shot by police in December. He talks about being shot by police officers and the recent arrest of Officer Wesley Cagle in the December shooting. (Lloyd Fox / Baltimore Sun)
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