Local News

Investigation finds Rockaway Beach shooting justified

ROCKAWAY BEACH, Ore. — The fatal shooting of a Rockaway Beach man by officers in September was justified according to findings released this week.

In a lengthy statement, Tillamook County District Attorney Aubrey Olson detailed her review of the Clatsop County Major Crimes Team investigation into the incident, described the events leading up to the shooting and, for the first time, released the names of the victim and the officers involved.

On Sept.7, Deputy Terrance Watters with the Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call from a house on North Juniper Street in Rockaway Beach. The caller said her son, Tyran “Ty” Meirow, was behaving erratically and breaking windows at her house. She said she was afraid he would hurt her. 

When Watters arrived, Meirow threw a brick at the deputy’s vehicle, shattering the glass, and threatened the deputy with bricks and a metal stake or pipe. He threatened to kill his mother and began walking toward the house.

Oregon State Police Trooper Thomas Mayne arrived soon after Watters and Meirow threw bricks at his vehicle as well.

According to Olson’s findings, the officers tried to deescalate the situation over the next four minutes.

In that time, Mayne used his taser, but was unsuccessful. Meirow threw a brick at the trooper, hitting him in the knee. The officers retreated behind their vehicles while Meirow continued to throw rocks and break windows.

The officers warned Meirow that he could be shot if he tried to go into the house. Meirow reportedly encouraged the officers to kill him and told the officers he would kill them.

Neighbors, who witnessed the incident, told KMUN that the officers pleaded with Meirow to calm down. Meirow’s mother also was yelling at him from an upstairs window to stop. Several of the neighbors had called 911 when Meirow first began screaming and throwing things at the house, and after Watters arrived.

Then Meirow broke a picture window at the front of the house and climbed inside, wielding a piece of metal. Mayne immediately fired at Meirow, followed by Watters. The officers each fired one shot.

They entered the house and found Meirow on the ground, bleeding. They provided first aid and CPR until medics arrived, but Meirow died at the scene.

According to the major crimes team’s investigation, neither officer had encountered Meirow before. Earlier that day, Watters had received a complaint about a man, who may have been Meirow, who was threatening people near the jetty in Barview, but Watters had not been able to locate the man.

In her conclusion, Olson wrote that the officers “responded to a call where they knew a male subject was armed with dangerous weapons and was breaking windows. … [Meirow] only escalated his behavior as the officers attempted to deescalate the situation, and each officer suffered injury resulting from [Meirow’s] attacks.”

She noted that Meirow ignored multiple warnings from the officers.

“Because [Meirow] had already attacked each officer and had threatened to kill them and his mother, both Deputy Watters and Trooper Mayne believed the subject would cause serious physical injury or death to [Meirow’s mother] if they did not use deadly physical force,” she wrote.

She concluded that deadly force was justified since the officers held a “reasonable belief” that Meirow was “committing or attempting to commit a felony involving the use or threatened imminent use of physical force against a person” and that he was attempting to break into the house and planned to harm, or try to harm, his mother.

“As such, no further action will be taken by the Tillamook County District Attorney.”

Meirow’s family members have described the incident as a mental health issue. They could not be immediately reached for comment.