Humza Haroual walked from one “Rampage” — the movie — into another: a real rampage in the parking lot of East Warren Theatre.
The real rampage — Wichita police called it an “ambush-style attack” — involved four to six gunshots this past Wednesday night, April 18. Police said the likely target was an off-duty Wichita police officer in a security vehicle in the theater parking lot near East 13th and K-96. Neither the officer nor his vehicle were hit.
Haroual, 20, says he was outside the theater building with about four other customers when the shots echoed. A police report lists Haroual as a witness; The Eagle spoke with him Monday evening.
On Tuesday, Crime Stoppers announced that it has increased the reward for catching whoever shot at the officer. “The anonymous tipster who helps solve this case is eligible for a $5,000 reward,” Crime Stoppers said in a statement. Anyone with information can call Crime Stoppers, 267-2111, or “submit a tip from any PC or mobile browser by going to http://www.wichitasedgwickcountycrimestoppers.com or downloading our P3 app available on iOS and Android platforms,” the statement said.
Haroual said he had gone with his brother to see “Rampage,” an action adventure starring Dwayne Johnson. They left a little early. As they were outside the building, about 5 feet from the wall, Haroual heard what sounded like a hammer chipping away at the building behind them. He recognized it as gunshots but saw no bullet holes. He thinks he heard five shots.
It sounded like a handgun or rifle — it was “too sharp of a sound” to be a shotgun, he said.
Police at the scene interviewed him that night, and an investigator called him Friday night.
The off-duty police officer — in a security vehicle with flashing lights — was probably 50 yards out in the parking lot, Haroual estimated. He didn’t see the dark SUV from which the shots were fired.
At a news conference Friday afternoon, police gave this statement: At about 10:45 p.m. Wednesday, April 18, a dark-colored Tahoe or Suburban “covertly drove onto an unpaved embankment with the vehicle headlights off.” The gunman “positioned behind the officer’s vehicle and fires four to six shots from an unknown caliber firearm towards the officer,” it said. The driver continued on the shoulder of K-96 and left the area.
Haroual said that he was “still kind of confused about what happened” when he drove over to the security vehicle that night and asked the officer, who was in the black Wichita police uniform, what had occurred.
“Gunshots,” the officer answered.
The officer had a flashlight. “He seemed eager to find out what happened, but he didn’t seem freaked out about what happened,” Haroual said.
Then, in a separate incident reported at 12:45 a.m. Monday, someone fired shots at an unoccupied Wichita police patrol truck parked in front of an officer's house near East 21st and K-96. Police said Monday that it is not known if the two incidents are related.