28 seconds that changed their world forever
Family, friends gather in Humboldt to mark one-year anniversary of Jensen’s death
HUMBOLDT — For 28 minutes, Krystal Wagner and her family and friends stood in the cold outside the Humboldt County Law Enforcement Center Sunday to remember the life of her son, Shane Jensen.
Jensen, 19, was shot and killed by Iowa Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer William Spece on Nov. 11, 2017.
“We’re here in remembrance,” Wagner said. “We’re going to stand for the 28 minutes, for the 28 seconds, it took for them to kill my son. The story isn’t over.”
Spece was not immediately identified by officials after the shooting. In its final statement to the press on Nov. 12 following the incident, the DCI said no further information would be released from their office and that the results of the investigation would be forwarded to the Humboldt County attorney’s office for review.
That report containing multiple documents was obtained by The Messenger on Friday from the Humboldt County attorney’s office.
The family and friends gathered at 2:30 p.m., the time when Shane was killed, Wagner said.
“There’s a lot of unanswered questions, and we’re being met with much resistance in getting answers,” Wagner said. “We have investigators who are working very hard for us, and we believe we have a wrongful death suit. I am in contact with an attorney.”
It’s too soon to give details of that potential suit, or name the attorney, Wagner said.
The family has seen video of those 28 seconds, taken from a cell phone by someone in a back yard, Wagner said. She contends that this video shows Jensen never pointed his gun at police.
“I will say it made perfectly clear that Shane did not point a gun at anyone,” she said.
“That video is clear,” said Jensen’s friend, David Decker. “He did not point a gun at no cop. He pointed it in the air.”
Jensen was being sought by family members and law enforcement on Nov. 11 after expressing thoughts of suicide by cop to family members and stealing a vehicle, according to the reports.
Jensen suffered from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and situational depression, Wagner said in 2017. He was the youngest member in his family, which includes eight sisters.
Family members gathered at three street corners across from the LEC Sunday, holding their signs as cars went by on Humboldt’s Sumner Avenue. One by one they moved across the street, ending the hour with all standing in front of the building.
“I would just like to say that Shane’s choice was made by the DNR officer,” said Spencer Hamilton, Shane’s twin sister. “People said he was suicidal, and he wanted to kill himself, and that’s why he might have had a gun to his head. But he never pulled that trigger.
“I guess we’re just doing this for justice, because if we can save one other mentally ill person from the same outcome, and save one more family from all this tragedy, that’s what we can do for whoever is out there suffering.”
Mental illness is not taken seriously, Hamilton said.
“We’re like the 49th state in the United States for mental health care, and it’s just not taken seriously. They’re not opening any new mental health facilities, they’re just closing them and closing them,” she said. “No family should be going through this.”
This was the first officer-involved shooting in a decade in which the officer’s name was not released, Wagner said.
In a decade, there hasn’t been an officer-involved shooting in Iowa that wasn’t deemed justified, she said.
“We’re just out here in support of Shane. It shouldn’t happen,” said Decker.
“He was my best friend; he lived with me. I tried to help him.”
Shane was fun, Decker said, and outgoing.
“He’s elegant. He was definitely one of a kind,” Decker said. “There was no one else like him.
“He did some bad stuff, but he’d give you the —- shirt off his back when it was 10 degrees below zero; if it meant him going naked, he would do it. That’s just how Shane was.”
“There needs to be some sort of investigation, because it’s not right.”