WICHITA — Wichita police have confirmed that the man shot to death by officers early Friday morning inside the Wilson Estates development is local businessman Robert Scharoun.
Scharoun, 41, was shot numerous times by officers when he pointed a rifle at them as he came around an 8-foot-tall wooden privacy fence at about 2:51 a.m. Friday.
After being felled by a volley of gunfire from officers, Police Chief Norman Williams said today, Scharoun _ dressed in a white bathrobe _ got back up, pointed the rifle at officers again and was hit by a second volley of gunfire.
He died later Friday morning at Wesley Medical Center.
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The incident began when Scharoun crashed his car into the garage door at the house where he lived until about 1 1/2 years ago and backed the car out of the garage. A short time later, he began firing.
Emergency dispatchers got more than a dozen calls from residents in and around the 8900 block of East Churchill Court starting at about 2:20 a.m. reporting gunshots in the neighborhood. The address is between Rock Road and Webb Road, south of 21st Street.
One caller told dispatchers they heard someone shout, "I'm going to kill you!"
Officers responding to the call heard more gunshots as they worked their way around the circular street that has cul-de-sacs linked to it, police officials have said.
They saw Scharoun fire at the pickup of a paper carrier for The Eagle, who was throwing newspapers on the block.
The carrier told The Eagle she saw him pull something from the trunk of the car and moments later heard a loud boom inside her Ford F-150 pickup.
The rifle bullet went through the windshield and rear-view mirror, lodging in the driver's headrest, Williams said.
The paper carrier, Charlene Barnum, later said the bullet missed her head by perhaps an inch. She was able to drive away unharmed.
As officers carefully closed in on where Scharoun was firing, he came into view again, Williams said. They saw him putting items in a row of bushes, then moving around in the garage.
When Scharoun heard or saw officers approaching, he ran through an open gate into the backyard of the house. Officers then heard him fire more shots — at the house just to the north of his old house.
"That house was struck at least three different times," Williams said.
Scharoun climbed over a back fence into the yard of the house he fired upon, Williams said.
A 52-year-old woman called 911 at 2:39 a.m. to report someone was breaking into her house, Williams said. She then fled to a neighbor's house across the street.
As officers were working their way east to establish a perimeter around the area, Scharoun appeared from around the corner of a fence in the area of 2000 N. Keeneland, Williams said.
He raised his rifle at officers, who scrambled for cover, but he did not fire before retreating back around the corner.
A few seconds later, Scharoun reappeared from around the fence with his rifle leveled directly at a police supervisor not far from him. When Scharoun did not respond to several commands to put down his weapon, officers opened fire.
The shots knocked Scharoun down, but he got back to his feet, still holding the rifle, and pointed it at them again. A second volley of shots downed him again.
Four officers have been placed on administrative leave, which is consistent with department policy. The KBI is leading the investigation into the shooting.
Court records show Scharoun went through a divorce in 2007 and had a protection-from-abuse order filed against him by his ex-wife in 2008.
He was the owner of the ValuePlace, a hybrid apartment/hotel operation, in Tulsa. He was also a franchisee of ValuePlace for the Tulsa area.
"That property had been doing well," said Greg Kossover, chief executive of ValuePlace LLC.