1 Kan. deputy killed, another critical after shooting during inmate transport

Authorities say the officers were overcome by an inmate while driving a transport vehicle near a courthouse


Associated Press

UPDATE 3:38 p.m. (PST):

Authorities have identified the Wyandotte County sheriff's deputy who died Friday after he and another deputy were shot while transporting an inmate.

Kansas City, Kansas, police say 35-year-old Patrick Rohrer died at the Kansas Medical Center from his injuries. He had worked for the department for seven years.

The injured female deputy underwent surgery. Her condition was not available.

The suspect also was shot and was operated on at the hospital. His condition also was not released.

Authorities say the two deputies were transporting the inmate to a hearing in downtown Kansas City when the suspect somehow got ahold of a weapon. The investigation into the shooting is continuing.

UPDATE 1:26 p.m. (PST):

An inmate overpowered two sheriff's deputies while being transported to a Kansas City courthouse on Friday, resulting in a shooting that killed one deputy and critically wounded the other, authorities said.

The suspect was also shot during the confrontation in a gated area near the Wyandotte County Courthouse in Kansas City, Kansas. Investigators said the inmate may have grabbed a weapon from one of the deputies during a struggle after he got out of a van transporting him late Friday morning.

"It is very possible that with their own firearm, they were both shot," sheriff's Maj. Kelli Bailiff said during a news conference at the University of Kansas Hospital.

The wounded deputy and the suspect were undergoing surgeries Friday afternoon. No other information has been released about the deputies or the suspect.

Bailiff said the inmate was being taken across the street from the jail, to the services building, for a court hearing. The inmate was taken in a van to a gated area behind the building, and when he got out of van, he somehow overtook and shot the deputies, Bailiff said.

Authorities said it was too early in the investigation to publicly detail how the shootings could have happened. Investigators will be reviewing surveillance video, according to Kansas City Police Department spokesman Zac Blair. The department is leading the investigation.

Bailiff said investigators do not believe the public is in any danger. Video from the scene showed the courthouse surrounded by yellow police tape, several police vehicles parked in the street and numerous uniformed law enforcement officers walking the grounds.

Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer was briefed on the shooting as he arrived at Children's Mercy Park for a congressional forum hosted by the Kansas City, Kansas, Chamber of Commerce, The Kansas City Star reported. He offered a moment of silence for the deputies after he finished his speech at the event.

He said law enforcement officers were doing their jobs and investigating even as they dealt with violence against two of their own. He noted that the county and the city have dealt with other officer shootings in the recent past.

Two Kansas City officers were shot and killed within less than three months in 2016. Capt. Robert Melton was slain in July while searching for a suspect in a drive-by shooting. Melton was part of the police honor guard for Det. Brad Lancaster, who was fatally shot earlier in 2016 near the Kansas Speedway.

In 2015, Wyandotte County Deputy Scott Wood was shot seven times but survived.

This is a breaking news update. Original story below. 

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Authorities say one sheriff's deputy is dead and another is critically wounded after they were overcome by an inmate while driving a transport vehicle near the Wyandotte County courthouse in Kansas City, Kansas.

Wyandotte County sheriff's spokeswoman Maj. Kelli Bailiff says the suspect also was wounded in the shooting late Friday morning. He's undergoing surgery.

No other details were released about the suspect, including his condition.

Bailiff says it's possible the deputies were overcome with their own weapons. Bailiff says the investigation is now being handled by the police department in Kansas City, Kansas. Police Officer Zac Blair says authorities are reviewing surveillance video.

 

Associated Press
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