Two Wichita police officers fired their weapons at the man who was shot Thursday during a warrant pick up, police said.
That’s one of several new details of the shooting Wichita police released Friday.
It happened just after 1 p.m. Thursday at the Sedgwick County probation office, 905 N. Main. Wichita police officers and a Kansas Department of Corrections Officer — who police had incorrectly identified as a U.S. Marshal on Thursday — were trying arrest the 29-year-old man for multiple warrants, police said at a Friday news conference.
The officers had been searching for the man for several weeks, and they had tracked him down at the probation office where his 26-year-old girlfriend had an appointment on Thursday, Wichita police Deputy Chief Troy Livingston said.
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At 1 p.m., a red, 2008 Ford Focus pulled into a space in the probation office parking lot. Police waited for the girlfriend to go inside and then moved to make the arrest.
After she went inside the building, a Kansas Department of Corrections Officer driving a Dodge Durango pulled in behind the red car, trapping it in its parking spot, which had cars on either side.
At least three Wichita police officers moved in on foot, photos released by police show. They had their guns drawn.
When Wichita police started shouting commands at the 28-year-old man, he backed his small red car into the Durango, “forcefully ramming” it, police said.
The man then drove forward, over a parking block and through a sign right beside two officers, before smashing into a building across the street.
Between the time he hit the Durango and crashed into the building, police say he drove at two Wichita police officers, who opened fire.
At 1:05 p.m., a police officer called over his radio that an officer was in trouble and a person had been shot.
The shooting happened within one minute of police moving in to arrest the man, police said.
“This escalated quickly,” Wichita police Deputy Chief Troy Livingston said on Friday.
No officers were injured by the 29-year-old man, who police would not identify on Friday. Right after the shooting, police said they weren’t sure if anyone had been hit by the driver and said one officer had blood on his arm.
That officer cut his arm on a broken window while pulling the man from his car, which had stolen tags, after the shooting, police said on Friday.
Although they weren’t injured, the officers were “fearful,” Livingston said. One officer thought his partner had been hit by the car when he fired. The other thought his partner was about to be hit, he said.
Wichita police have a video of the incident, Livingston said. At Friday’s news conference, police released three frames from the video camera in the probation office’s parking. They appear to show the red Ford Focus in a parking spot outside the probation office. There are cars on either side. A Corrections Officer’s vehicle is behind it. Another frame shows two officers near the driver’s side of the vehicle and one on the passenger’s side. Police say the red car turned towards the officers on the driver’s side of the car before they fired.
Police didn’t say exactly when the officers fired at the man in the red car, but the final frame released by police shows an officer with his gun pointed in the driver’s side window. Livingston said the officers were close to the car when they fired.
The red car traveled across Main Street before crashing into a business at 906 N. Main.
The two officers who shot at the man are 13-year and 5-year veterans of the Wichita Police Department and have both been placed on paid leave, Livingston said.
Witnesses said they heard several shots and one witness heard someone yell, “Freeze” around the time shots were fired.
After the man was shot, a police officer issued an emotional call.
“We got gunshots fired. I got one. Shot in the head,” the officer says, before giving a suspect condition.
“Code Blue” — unresponsive.
“All officers are fine. All officers are fine,” the officer says.
Later in the radio traffic, archived on Broadcastify, the officer gives a brief narrative of what happened.
“We were standing next to that white Saturn View and next to that Buick right there. That’s where we were when shots were fired,” he says.
“Obviously this is a tragic situation nobody wants to encounter,” Livingston said. “But it does demonstrate how quickly things can escalate and what our officers deal with on a daily basis.”
“Our thoughts and prayers remain with all of those affected, including the family of the suspect,” he said.
Police did not identify the man who was shot, but spent much of the news conference giving the his criminal past.
The man had two warrants out of Sedgwick County, one for three counts of aggravated robbery and aggravated battery with the use of a deadly weapon and another for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. He also had traffic warrants out of Newton and Wichita, Livingston said.
During one of his alleged crimes, police say he pointed a gun at a security guard to escape, and in another a gun was fired inside a residence during a burglary, Livingston said.
Officers had made multiple attempts to have the man turn himself in peacefully, Livingston said, but it was his history of alleged violent crimes with guns that led officers to think he was “armed and dangerous” when they approached him in the parking lot Thursday, Livingston said.
A gun was found in the red car after the shooting, but Livingston said he doesn’t know if the man was trying to use it when he was shot.
The 28-year-old man was in critical condition at a local hospital Friday morning, Wichita police Officer Charley Davidson said. Police say he was shot multiple times. Emergency radio traffic said the man was shot in the head.