PORTLAND — The Attorney General has determined that a Portland police officer who shot a suspect in his neck and back in a car in April was justified in using deadly force.

Attorney General William Schneider said in a release today that Robert Miller believed that he and Officer David Schertz were threatened by deadly force when he shot Jonathan Mitchell, 30, of Veazie.

Miller also reasonably believed Mitchell had committed a crime using force or threatened force and was likely to seriously endanger others, Schneider said.

The release said Miller and Schertz were looking for Mitchell based on a report he had broken into the apartment of his ex-wife who had a protection order against him.

Officer Miller spotted Mitchell’s car and a high-speed chase ensued, which ended at a dead end on Fairfield Street. As the officers tried to get Mitchell out of the car, grabbing him through the open front door, Mitchell sped off, the press release said.

“This sudden movement of the vehicle resulted in both officers having to move quickly away from the vehicle,” and initially pulled Office Miller with the vehicle, the release said.

Miller fired twice, hitting Mitchell in the neck and back.

Mitchell was sentenced in August to nine months and one day in prison, the mandatory minimum penalty for being a habitual driving offender.

Charges stemming from accusations that he had used the car in a dangerous manner while fleeing police and had broken into his estranged wife’s apartment — two counts of reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon and one count of criminal trespass — were dropped as part of a plea deal.

One of the issues the Attorney General examined is whether deadly force was necessary to stop a dangerous person from escaping. He also examined whether deadly force was threatened against police or others.

The case drew added attention when a video of the shooting was released by Mitchell’s attorney. The video appeared to show the car was pulling away from Miller as the shots were fired.

Micthell’s attorneys said they intend to file a lawsuit.