Crime & Courts

August 14, 2014

Man critically injured in Newton police shooting (VIDEO)

Police were not giving an update on the injured man’s condition during Thursday evening but said that one police officer was inside the home with the man when the gunfire occurred.

A man was critically injured in an officer-involved shooting in Newton on Thursday afternoon, according to reports from Newton police and Harvey County dispatch.

Newton police Lt. Craig Dunlavy said an officer responding to a domestic violence report at Prairie Estates mobile home park was confronted by a man “brandishing a weapon” after arriving around 4 p.m. Dunlavy said the officer was inside the home when the gunfire occurred and that others were en route to the mobile home park. He confirmed early Thursday evening that the shooting involved police but would not give the name of the officer who fired.

“Officers responded. Shots were fired,” Dunlavy said during a briefing with reporters about two hours after the shooting. “The suspect … was taken to Newton Medical Center” afterward, he said. No police officers were hurt.

Newton police and other agencies handling the investigation were not giving reporters an update on the man’s condition Thursday evening. Harvey County dispatch said shortly after the shooting occurred that the man was not breathing when he was transported to the hospital.

Dunlavy on Thursday would not give details about where the bullet struck the man’s body, his age or whether he lived in the home where the shooting occurred. He said at least two people were involved in the domestic disturbance. Dunlavy also told reporters around 6 p.m. Thursday that he was “not ready” to say what type of weapon the man possessed during the confrontation with police.

Authorities plan to give an update on the investigation during a news conference scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday at Newton’s law enforcement center, 120 E. Seventh, Dunlavy said Thursday night. He added that law enforcement were still working to interview residents of Prairie Estates, located south of First Street on Evans Avenue in Newton, about what they saw or heard in the moments before and after the shooting.

Newton police on Thursday turned the shooting scene over to the Harvey County Sheriff’s Office, Dunlavy said. It then was turned over to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation for further investigation, he said. By evening, several marked vehicles from the agencies, as well as the Kansas Highway Patrol, lined the streets of Prairie Estates near the complex’s office and pool. Crime scene tape cordoned off the driveway of a tan single-wide mobile home with dark brown trim that sits to the west of the pool. A light gray pickup truck and a red car were parked in the home’s driveway, and several uniformed officers gathered outside.

Dunlavy said it likely would be Friday before authorities named the injured man.

“The investigation is still in its infant stages so there’s a lot of information we still don’t know,” Dunlavy said Thursday evening. “We’re trying to ascertain and put all the pieces together.”

He added: “This is a large mobile home complex. So there’s lots of people who still need to be visited with to see what they heard or saw or any other information that may help in the investigation.”

The shooting was reported at 4:08 p.m., a Harvey County dispatcher said.

Contributing: Stan Finger of The Eagle

Reach Amy Renee Leiker at 316-268-6644 or Follow her on Twitter: @amyreneeleiker.

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