Shooting at Canyon de Chelly under investigation

CHINLE, Ariz. — The investigation continues for an assault on a federal officer Oct. 5, at Canyon de Chelly National Monument. A National Park Service (NPS) Ranger shot and killed a man who was armed with a knife. The individual who died was identified as Venson Kee Yazzie, 43.

The NPS has national policy that governs the response to an officer involved shooting within the boundaries to ensure investigations are conducted with thoroughness, professionalism and impartiality.

The investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National Park Service’s Officer Involved Shooting Team. Upon completion of the investigation, it will be submitted to the United States Attorney’s Office District of Arizona. Additionally, the NPS Office of Professional Responsibility will provide an objective and thorough internal investigation into the officer’s actions. Involved officers are placed on administrative leave while these investigations occur.

NPS Law Enforcement Officers are highly-trained federal officers who serve and protect visitors and the natural and cultural resources within the parks. These officers attend basic law enforcement training at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Georgia, and participate in a thorough, on-the-job field training program before becoming full-performance rangers.

The park continues to ask for patience while they conduct a thorough review of the incident and allow for the FBI to complete their investigation. Questions regarding the investigation can be sent to


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