Dodge County deputy returns to duty after fatal shooting

sheriffs squad car lights

DODGE COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) – The Dodge County District Attorney’s Office has found that a deputy was justified in his use of deadly force in the shooting of a Beaver Dam man.

Sgt. Joseph Nicholas has been restored to full duty with the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office.

Sgt. Nicholas shot and killed 59-year-old James Quealy on Aug. 5, 2016.

Investigators say Sgt. Nicholas was one of the deputies who responded to a request for assistance at Quealy’s residence in Beaver Dam.  Beaver Dam Police said Quealy had made comments that he wanted to die “suicide by cop.”

During negotiations, Quealy turned his weapon on Sgt. Nicholas and fired, according to investigators. Nicholas returned fire, killing Quealy.

Sgt. Nicholas was not hurt.

Nicholas was put on administrative leave pending an investigation by the Wisconsin Department of Justice, which was later handed over to the DA’s office.

On Wednesday, the Sheriff’s Office announced that Sgt. Nicholas was cleared by the DA’s office.

“Sgt. Nicholas is a valued member of the Sheriff’s Office who was forced to make a very difficult decision to protect himself, his fellow law enforcement officers, and the community as a whole,” reads a statement from the Sheriff’s Office.

“The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office would like to once again convey its deepest sympathies to the family of James Quealy.”