COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho – A Coeur d’Alene Police officer was shot in the line of duty and underwent surgery late Tuesday night.
Coeur d’Alene Police Chief Lee White said Coeur d'Alene Police stopped an individual near the intersection of Government Way and Hattie Avenue around 7:00 p.m. At some point during the stop, the officers learned the suspect had a felony warrant for his arrest. When officers approached the suspect, White said the suspect engaged the officers with gunfire.
Witnesses said the shooting sounded like a fire fight.
"At least 10 to 15 shots. There was a bunch of shots going off. At first I thought they were firecrackers until I heard a larger caliber going off and I knew it was gunshots," witness Chris Moore said.
At first, police thought there was an active shooter. People nearby were told to take cover in their homes and as of 9:45 p.m., some of them could not come out because officers were going through evidence.
White said at least one officer was struck by the gunfire, then officers returned fire on the suspect who was also hit. The officer was transported to Kootenai Health by another officer and was in surgery as of 8:45 p.m. White said he did not have an update on the injured officer's condition, but said he was "up and talking to us." White said the suspect was pronounced dead at the hospital.
There was a heavy police presence outside of Kootenai Health Tuesday night.
White did not identify the officers involved or the suspect.
White said one of the officers who responded to the call had just completed the police academy in August. He is currently in the field training program. He and a training officer both responded to the scene. White said there was at least one other officer that was on scene during the gunfire. White would not say how many officers opened fire and said a gun was found on the scene.
The Mobile Crime lab was on scene of the investigation. It is used in cases where there is just so much evidence to be processed that officers cannot possibly take everything back to the police station, so they bring part of the police station to the scene.
Idaho State Patrol is taking the lead on this case. They expect to be on scene all night long.
White said they plan to give another update Wednesday morning.