Grief after Utah officer killed, 5 others wounded

#1
Utah law enforcement officers mourned one of their own Thursday after a shooting left one officer dead and five others wounded. The Wednesday night incident took place when they were attempting to serve a search warrant.

The six officers and the suspect were rushed to hospitals, Ogden Assistant Police Chief Marcy Korgenski said.

Officer Jared Francom died from his wounds, Ogden police said early Thursday.

"Agent Francom has served the citizens of Ogden city with honor for seven years," authorities said in a statement.

Francom is survived by his wife and two young children, the statement said. His widow, Erin, told CNN affiliate KUTV the officer "loved his job more than anything. He loved his family. He was a good husband."



Utah community mourns fallen officer

The suspect, identified as Matthew David Stewart, 37, suffered injuries not considered to be life-threatening, authorities said.

Stewart's father, Michael, said the family was sorry for what happened, reported affiliate KTVX.

"He is a decorated Gulf War veteran from the first Gulf War," Michael Stewart said of his estranged son. "I didn't know what he did over there. I know he's had some mental issues."

The wounded officers were identified as Sgt. Nate Hutchinson with the Weber County Sheriff's Office; and Jason Vanderwarf, Shawn Grogan, Kasey Burrell and Michael Rounkles. CNN affiliate KSL said Vanderwarf is with the Roy police and Grogan, Burrell and Rounkles are Ogden officers.

Ogden Regional Medical Center said Thursday that Vanderwarf was treated and released.

The four other officers remained in Ogden's McKay-Dee Hospital, spokesman Chris Dallin said. Three were in critical condition, and one was in stable condition, Dallin said.

Several officials fought tears as they discussed the incident at a news conference

"This is a family. This is a law enforcement family," Ogden Police Chief Wayne Tarwater said. "The law enforcement community is mourning."

"We have lost a brother," Weber County Sheriff Terry Thompson said. "We will grieve this loss" with the knowledge that Francom gave his life for his fellow officers and the community, he said.

The officers, part of a multi-agency narcotics task force, were attempting to serve a search warrant "based on probable cause there was drug activity" at an address in Ogden, Tarwater said. He would not elaborate.

Stewart's father told KUTV his son is not a drug dealer.

The warrant was a "knock-and-announce," meaning that officers knock on a residence's door and announce their presence, he said. If no one answers, "under certain circumstances, they will go ahead and enter the home. That's exactly what happened." When they entered the home, the officers came under fire, he said.

The task force requires officers to wear bulletproof vests, he said, and "as far as I know, the officers were wearing vests and protective gear."

Stewart has a "limited criminal history," Tarwater said. He did not have specifics but said he believed Stewart's record was mostly misdemeanors.

Asked about reports that as many as 12 officers were sent to Stewart's home, strike force commander Lt. Darin Parke told reporters that number is not unusual. There was "not really a great deal that set this investigation apart ... other than the outcome," he said.

The shooting will be subject to an internal investigation as well as an external review by the Weber County attorney, he said. Citing those investigations, police limited the release of information.

Tarwater thanked the state of Utah, particularly police agencies, for their support. He said that at one point, at an Ogden hospital Wednesday night, there were "40 officers from probably seven different agencies."

Gov. Gary Herbert met with families of the officers and said funds were set up for their future needs. "Our hearts go out to them," he told reporters at one of the hospitals.

Herbert ordered that state and U.S. flags be lowered in the city of Ogden to honor the officers, Ogden Mayor Mike Caldwell said.

Thursday was Caldwell's first day on the job.

Ogden is about 40 miles north of Salt Lake City in northern Utah.

Clayton Payne, a resident of the neighborhood where the shootings took place, told KSL, "I was sitting in the front room watching TV, heard three pops. My fiance asked if they were fireworks. I said, 'No, those are gunshots.' "

He said he ran outside after hearing what sounded like an AK-47.

"I ran out here to see what was going on, and I was escorted back to my house by the cops," he said. "They said, 'Get in your house. Get down.'"

The shootings follow a year in which U.S. cities saw an increase in officers killed.

The number of officers who died in the line of duty in 2011 increased 16% nationwide from last year, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.

Last year, 177 officers were killed, compared with 153 in 2010, the organization said.

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Family Photo

Matthew David Stewart, who served in the military from 1994 to 1996, is supected in the shooting of six police officers shot Wednesday night, Jan. 5, 2012, while the officers were serving a drug-related search warrant. Officer Jared Francom, of the Ogden Police Department, died as a result of his injuries. The seven-year veteran of the police department is survived by a wife and two young children.
 

Neckbeard

I'm Team Piggy!
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#2
Saw it yesterday. They said the firearm he used was "high powered" and used it as an excuse to give "military grade weaponry to our undergunned police forces."

Big old gun grab because the guy is white. Really too bad about the cops though.

They mentioned he had PTSD from military service 16 years ago. This is another way to take guns from veterans and make the largest race and gender group in America, white men, look like psychopaths who shouldn't be allowed to have icky, naughty weapons.

Fuckin' awful and depressing story that was turned into anti-white and anti-vet and anti-gun propaganda before the cop's body was cold.
 
#3
Yep... forgot to add:

Father of alleged gunman says estranged son was 'self-medicating'

The father of the man suspected of shooting six police officers in Ogden described his oldest son as having mental problems and "self-medicating" with marijuana.

"We were concerned for him. But there was just nothing we could for him. He wouldn't have anything to do with his mother or his father," Michael Stewart told the Deseret News Thursday.

He said his 37-year-old son, an Army veteran who lived alone, has been estranged from the family for some time.

Matthew David Stewart, his father said, worked graveyard shifts at Walmart and was likely sleeping when police arrived at his door about 9 p.m. Wednesday.

"If he woke up and there are people in his house, I'm sure he would react differently," Michael Stewart said, adding he didn't know his son had any guns. "I don't know that he had the intention of shooting any police officers."

Neighbor Jerri Johnson believed Matthew Stewart had lived in the Jackson Avenue home for several years. She described him as "friendly" and a person who would "say hello" if you saw him working in the yard. She said her ex-husband, an Iraq war vet, talked more to Stewart than she did. The fact the two were vets gave them something in common to talk about.

Johnson said she never noticed any red flags that would indicate something like the shooting could happen in her neighborhood.

Other neighbors said they rarely saw Matthew Stewart outside of his home.

Police said the alleged gunman has a limited criminal history. However, Michael Stewart said he's never known his son, who he said is shy and suffers from severe depression, to knowingly commit even a single crime.

"We're very upset about this," he said. "We're upset that an officer was killed."

A search of Utah court records indicates that Matthew Stewart has had a misdemeanor conviction of driving without insurance in 2005, and a seat belt violation in 2004.

Matthew Stewart joined the Army in 1994 and was stationed at Fort Bragg, N.C., until January 1996. He was then assigned in Germany, until he was discharged in December 1998, according to Army spokesman Troy A. Rolan Sr. During his service, Matthew Stewart maintained communications equipment and received the Army Achievement Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.

Rolan said Matthew Stewart's service came between the two wars in Iraq and the soldier was never on a battle deployment. Despite that, Matthew Stewart's father said his son was a "different person" after his military service.

"Before the war, he was a normal kid," Michael Stewart said. "We were closer then. I really don't know what happened."

He said his son was probably growing marijuana, but only for his own use. "He didn't want to get involved in the drug system, the illicit drug trade," Michael Stewart said.

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whiskeyguy

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#4
They mentioned he had PTSD from military service 16 years ago.
Matthew Stewart joined the Army in 1994 and was stationed at Fort Bragg, N.C., until January 1996. He was then assigned in Germany, until he was discharged in December 1998, according to Army spokesman Troy A. Rolan Sr. During his service, Matthew Stewart maintained communications equipment and received the Army Achievement Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.

Rolan said Matthew Stewart's service came between the two wars in Iraq and the soldier was never on a battle deployment. Despite that, Matthew Stewart's father said his son was a "different person" after his military service.
Germany in the mid-90s will change a person...
 

KRSOne

Registered User
#6
More deaths because of drug nonsense.
 
#8
I love how they say "We're not sure they were wearing vests, we assume they were."

If a guy's good enough with a rifle to kill a cop and wound 5 more? They were wearing vests. What an odd thing to say.
 

Josh_R

Registered User
#10
Matthew Stewart maintained communications equipment and received the Army Achievement Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.
LOL, we called that the "fire-watch ribbon".
 

CougarHunter

Lying causes cat piss smell.
#11
People kill their DI's and blow their heads off during fire watch. It's serious business, mister!
 

Creasy Bear

gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh
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#12
Matthew Stewart joined the Army in 1994 and was stationed at Fort Bragg, N.C., until January 1996. He was then assigned in Germany, until he was discharged in December 1998, according to Army spokesman Troy A. Rolan Sr. During his service, Matthew Stewart maintained communications equipment and received the Army Achievement Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.

Rolan said Matthew Stewart's service came between the two wars in Iraq and the soldier was never on a battle deployment. Despite that, Matthew Stewart's father said his son was a "different person" after his military service.

"Before the war, he was a normal kid," Michael Stewart said.
Oh yeah... all those dead walkie talkies strewn about on your workbench with their guts all torn out. That horror will haunt your dreams, man. He probably heard the squelch and crackle of the cop's radios and it was like he was was right back in the shit living his radio repairman nightmare all over again.

Ugh... fuck this dad and his stupid PTSD war hero bullshit.

And fuck the stupid laws against marijuana... enough with this fucking money and life sucking idiocy.
 
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