NASHVILLE, TN – Officer Andrew Delke, 25, will be charged with murder in the first degree for killing Daniel Hambrick on July 26. He shot him three times in the back as Hambrick was running away from him at the Henry Hale apartments.
The stage is now set for a dramatic showdown between District Attorney General Glenn Funk, who will prosecute the case, and David L. Raybin, who will defend Delke. The police and the D.A. are on opposite sides and have different views about when, and under what circumstances, police officers are permitted to use deadly force when arresting a suspect.
Although Delke thought he was, Judge Melissa Blackburn ruled Hambrick was not a suspect. He had a record but Delke didn’t know that when he shot him down. The judge said Hambrick’s suspicious behavior did not warrant a foot chase much less a killing. And on that basis she felt the case needed to go to trial.
Prosecuting the case will not win Funk many friends in MNPD but it will get him a lot of black votes in the next election in 2022. The new Community Oversight Board (COB) is facing a tough job. In the coming months, the COB will have to decide what kind of policing Nashville wants and then convince the MNPD to provide it. Because of the Delke case, the gulf between the two right now is about as wide as the Grand Canyon.
District Attorney General Glenn Funk released the following statement Friday:
“Today, the Grand Jury, an independent body of 13 citizens of Davidson County, returned an indictment charging Andrew Delke with First Degree Murder for the fatal shooting of Daniel Hambrick. The case will now proceed in the Criminal Court of Davidson County and, as it is a pending case, I will not be able to comment further about the facts and evidence.”
Attorney David Raybin, Delke’s lawyer, released this statement Friday:
“I understand that the District Attorney has obtained an indictment from the Grand Jury. Officer Andrew Delke will continue to defend himself on the basis that he acted in accordance with his training and Tennessee law in response to an armed suspect who ignored repeated orders to drop his gun. Officer Delke appreciates the outpouring of support he has received from members of the community who understand the difficult and often life-threatening situations faced by our police officers every day.
While no citizen looks forward to a trial on allegations such as this, Officer Delke and his defense team will trust in the jury system. We will enter a plea of not guilty to this charge.”