Bizarre story surfaces a week after fatal police encounter

The Cherry Hill police officer who fired his weapon and the man who was killed during a wellness visit were both identified Tuesday by the New Jersey Attorney General’s office yesterday, a week after the fatal encounter.

According to the authorities, Joseph Bestic Jr., 63, was pronounced dead at the scene at a residence in the 3000 block of Chapel Avenue West.

Update: A release from the incorrectly identified the victim as “Joseph Bestick Jr.”

The agency claims Cherry Hill police officers responded to an October 11 request for a well-being check at the address and found Bestick, who retrieved a firearm and shot himself.

Officer Jared Fox also fired his service weapon although it is unclear whether he shot the resident or not.

The state Attorney General’s office of Public Integrity and Accountability is required by law to conduct an investigation in any fatal encounter with law enforcement or while someone dies in custody.

Joseph Bestic Jr. in an undated photo with his wife, Honey Lynn Bestic. FACEBOOK

No details about the incident were released until a week after the man was killed except for the fact that the state was investigating the fatality and police were involved.

Despite numerous attempts to get more information from the police and Attorney General, the facts were not reported until a week after Bestick died.

When police in Minnesota that were eventually convicted of murder killed George Floyd, the police department there issued a press release that merely stated a man suffered a fatal medical emergency during the encounter.

Police in the United States killed more than 1,000 people last year and almost 800 civilians so far this year, although these incidents are not reported by a central government authority.

Fox was one of 14 young men and women sworn in by Mayor Susan Shin Angulo as the newest members of the Cherry Hill Police Department

Fox was one of eight probationary police officers inducted during the February 24 ceremony.

A Rutgers University study recently said that American police receive far less training than law enforcement officers in other countries and the United States has one of the greatest rates of fatal encounters that involve authorities who are supposed to protect and serve the public.

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