Man shot by police; answered door with gun

Photos from the scene of an officer involved shooting near the corner of W. State Boulevard and St. Marys Avenue on June 13, 2015.
Fort Wayne police at State Blvd and St. Marys.
Fort Wayne police at State Blvd and St. Marys.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) -The Fort Wayne Police Department confirmed one man was dead after an officer-involved shooting Saturday night. FWPD confirmed that only one officer fired the shots, and that officer was not hurt.

Police were dispatched out around 9:45 Saturday night on a disturbance call in the 2400 Block of St. Marys Avenue. When officers arrived, they were told a man left a house in the area and possibly had a handgun.

Police then went to a house down the street in the 2500 Block of St. Marys Avenue. That’s where a man armed with a gun answered the door. Officers ordered the man to put the gun down several times. He refused, and shots were fired, hitting the man. Paramedics pronounced the man dead at the scene.

FWPD doesn’t know if the man lived at the home where the shooting happened.

The Indiana State Police, the Allen County Prosecutor’s Office, the Allen County Coroner’s Office and FWPD Internal Affairs are assisting in the investigation.

“It’s very in depth. We want to make sure that it’s a very complete and thorough investigation. So, it will take a while,” FWPD spokesman Officer John Chambers said.

FWPD Police Chief Garry Hamilton said the main focus of the investigation is being as clear as possible and taking into account every possible detail of the incident.

“It’s not an incident we will sweep under the carpet. We want to be transparent as to our officers that are involved in the shooting. We’ve been doing this for years. This is before the Fergusons, before the Clevelands, before the Baltimore incidents. It’s something that we have done routinely and will continue to do so that we have a thorough investigation and we can pass it on to any federal agency if they wish to review the case, be it the FBI, to review the case and make sure that we are on board and we get everything correct,” Chief Hamilton said.

Chief Hamilton also said the protocol stays the same regardless of the type of shooting.

“Our sympathies go out to the family of the victim. We have to be professional in how we handle the situation. In the back of your mind, it does bother you, but you have a job to do and I expect my officers to be professional at all times and we’ll review everything,” Chief Hamilton said.

Dozens of officers could be seen at the corner of St. Marys and Lillian Avenues, between Goshen Avenue and W. State Boulevard for several hours after the shooting. Click here for a more detailed map of the area.

Further details about the shooting have not been released at this time.

Animal Care and Control was also at the scene. Neighbors told NewsChannel 15 that four dogs and a bird were taken out of the home where the shooting happened.

NewsChannel 15 also talked to several neighbors at the scene. Sara Bartlett’s mother lives down the street from where the shooting happened.

“As we were driving down here [on St. Marys], we saw a cop car in the driveway down here talking to somebody up on a porch and then when we walked into my moms, she told me how a cop had knocked at her door asking if she had seen anything and she had seen a man running through her yard and then we sat down. Within like two minutes we heard like five gunshots and then police were just everywhere,” Bartlett said.

There are no details on whether or not the man the neighbors saw running through the yard is connected to the shooting.

This is the first officer-involved shooting in Fort Wayne since 2013. There were four officer-involved shootings that year.

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