Off-Duty Officer "Absolutely Justified" in Shooting Armed Bank Robber

The off-duty police officer who shot and killed an armed bank robber outside Cincinnati, OH was “absolutely justified” in his response to the situation, Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters said Friday.


Cincinnati Police Officer Kevin Hankerson was off-duty, working as a security guard at the Fifth Third bank in Madisonville, OH Wednesday when Terry Frost III entered the bank wearing a hoodie and a mask and brandishing a weapon.

Surveillance video shows Frost vaulting over the bank’s service counter and making a motion with his hand, indicating he had a weapon, which he had concealed with a grocery bag over his arm.

“He was in a full sprint and vaulted himself over the counter,” Deters said. “He was going after something. This was not normal.”

Once Frost breached the counter, Hankerson, 55, heroically leapt to action; pushing the bank teller out of the way and confronting Frost with his gun drawn.

The gun used in the robbery was a .38 caliber Derringer, Deters said, but luckily, Frost loaded it with the wrong ammunition.

“There was a strike mark on the firing pin,” Deters said. “He is literally almost jerking his arm forward as he points at the teller and officer.”

Deters speculated that was the point Frost attempted to fire the weapon, but it misfired.

Hankerson then fired twice, hitting Frost once, as he leaped back over the service counter.

“It was as clean a police-involved shooting as I’ve ever seen,” Deters said at a news conference during which he also showed clips from the bank’s surveillance video.


While Deters confirmed the case will not be presented to a grand jury, he did have empathy for the senseless loss of life Frost’s actions brought upon himself.

“The 20-year-old man committed a senseless and violent act,” Deters said. “But he’s still somebody’s kid. And I think the chief would agree with me that it’s still a very sad time for his family.”

In a statement made Thursday, Frost’s father, Terry Frost II, said his son may have made a mistake, but he didn’t deserve to die for it.

“He will be missed,” said Terry Frost II. “I’m going to do everything I can for him.”

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters insists Hankerson, an 18 year veteran of the Cincinnati Police Department, committed a great act of bravery and should be commended for his actions.

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