WATERLOO, Ind. (WANE) – After a fellow officer was shot in the face early Thursday morning, Waterloo Deputy Marshall Aaron Fike was awoken at home and was one of the first policemen on the scene of where the suspects responsible were found.
Fike, a nine-year veteran of the Waterloo Police Department, told NewsChannel 15 Friday that when he got the call around 3:40 a.m., police were not sure if Waterloo Deputy Marshal Stephen Brady was stabbed or shot in the face.
The incident started around 3 a.m. when two people, now known as Ralph Daniel Hardiek and Julie Marie King, knocked on a neighbor’s door on County Road 35/Center Street asking to borrow a car to tow theirs out of a ditch. When the woman refused she went to a nearby gas station to call police.
That was when she found Brady and another officer and told them of the situation.
Soon after the officers started looking for the couple of interest, Brady radioed to the other that he had found the two seeking help and was going to approach them.
Fike said police believe Brady rolled down the window of his vehicle to speak with the couple and was shot immediately.
About twenty seconds after Brady’s radio communication, the other officer looking for the suspects found Brady shot and slumped over the driver’s seat of his cruiser.
After police asked for the public’s help in finding the suspects, around 6 a.m. a citizen in the 200 block of South Center Street called saying there were two people hiding under his deck.
Fike, along with about 10 agencies and at least 34 officers had reported.
Fike said it looked like Hardiek and King were trying to play like they were asleep and did not respond to multiple commands from the responding officers.
Officers then resorted to tasing the suspects. Fike said as Hardiek rolled over, he pointed a gun at the officers, though he was not sure if Hardiek actually fired it.
Officers fired shots hitting both Hardiek and King. Fike said he did not fire his weapon because there was a concern for crossfire and was not sure how many officers did fire.
Hardiek died at the scene and King was unconscious, but breathing. She was last listed in critical condition at Parkview Hospital in Fort Wayne.
Fike said after the shooting was over, police found Hardiek and King each had pistols. A shotgun and knives were also found near them.
Indiana State Police said a red 1996 Dodge Neon, registered to Julie Marie King was found in the area of County Roads 35 and 10 in DeKalb County, but at this point police are not aware of the condition the car is in or where exactly it was situated in relation to where they originally went seeking help.
Fike added that is was fortunate that the second overnight officer with Brady was on duty at the time and able to find him as quickly as he did. 90% of the time there is only one overnight officer in Waterloo.
The last Fike heard, Brady was on a ventilator system and had improved from critical to serious condition at Parkview Hospital on Randallia Drive in Fort Wayne.
A fund to benefit Brady and his family has been established and donations to the Stephen Brady Benefit can be sent to:
Farmer’s State Bank
c/o Stephen Brady Benefit
P.O. Box 708
Waterloo, IN 46793