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Monday, September 28, 2009

Wichita Kansas; Sedgwick County Sheriff's Deputy Brian S Etheridge dies following shooting

Right Sedgwick County Sheriff's Depty Brian S Etheridge
September 28, 2009 Last Update: 10:53 pm
WICHITA, Kansas – Authorities say Sedgwick County Sheriff's Deputy Brian S. Etheridge died after he was shot in the chest near South Rock Road Monday afternoon.
Officials are investigating the circumstances behind the shooting, but say the deputy was at a home in the area for a reported larceny when he was shot. Officials are now looking into the possibility that the deputy was set up and are interviewing witnesses.
The deputy was shot twice (once in the chest and once in the lower leg area) and taken in critical condition to a local hospital. It was hoped that he would survive, but died after surgery from his injuries.
Sheriff Bob Hinshaw says Etheridge was 26 years old, married and had been with the sheriff's department for just over a year.
The suspect is reportedly 27 years old and officers say he had recently been released on parole... Late Monday afternoon, the suspect was shot by law enforcement and taken to a local hospital in very critical condition and later died at the hospital.

September 28, 2009
It started shortly before noon Monday with the report of a theft, a seemingly routine call.
It ended with a Sedgwick County sheriff's deputy dead from gunshot wounds and a suspect dead after exchanging gunfire with officers. It was too early Monday night to say how and why it occurred, Sheriff Bob Hinshaw said.
The slain deputy, Brian S. Etheridge, was an "excellent deputy," Hinshaw said. He had spent a little more than a year with the Sheriff's Office. He was 26. He leaves a wife and a small child.
The 27-year-old suspect's name was not released.

Etheridge's wounding drew a massive response — by scores of officers from state, federal and local agencies around the Wichita area... They closed down part of South Rock Road near McConnell Air Force Base so emergency vehicles could fill the wide street...

Officers cordoned off an area between Rock and Webb roads and between 31st and 39th Street South — just east of the Air Force base — and asked people in that area to evacuate if possible.
Earlier in the day, Hinshaw sounded optimistic about Etheridge's chance of surviving, saying he was in critical but stable condition. Hinshaw asked for prayers.

But at a news conference outside the courthouse Monday evening, Hinshaw said the deputy's condition had worsened, that he had been taken back into surgery and that he died at 4:20 p.m. His family was with him...
The suspect, whom Hinshaw declined to name, died at 6:10 p.m. after being taken to a hospital after he exchanged gunfire with officers, Hinshaw said...

Hinshaw gave this timeline of the day's events:

At about 11:42 a.m., Etheridge received a call of a larceny at a residence in the 3600 block of South Rock Road, outside the city limits.

He arrived at about 11:51 a.m. At 12:01 p.m., he reported to a dispatcher that he had been shot.
Hinshaw said Etheridge had been wounded in his torso and leg or foot.

Earlier in the day, Hinshaw said authorities were considering the possibility that the report of a larceny might have been "a set-up" to lure an officer to the house...

During one of several briefings Monday, Hinshaw had said, "We're trying to resolve this as peaceably as possible... trying to make sure nobody else gets hurt."
...Authorities thought the man had barricaded himself in a house at or next to where the shooting occurred, Hinshaw said.
Shortly before 4 p.m., police fired tear gas into the house where they thought the man was located and deployed a robot in an attempt to confirm his presence. But the robot could not get into the house.
At some point late in the day, officers spotted the suspect in a field about a quarter-mile from where the shooting occurred. He got to his feet and ran and was seriously wounded in an exchange of gunfire, Sedgwick County Undersheriff Michael Stover said.

Authorities established a location for nearby residents returning from school or work to remain until the situation was resolved. Hinshaw said investigators were interviewing relatives and neighbors of the suspect.

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