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Wichita police: Man injured in officer-involved shooting had threatened to kill woman, children

Published: Mar. 18, 2021 at 9:07 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 19, 2021 at 3:41 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Update Friday, March 19, 2021: The Wichita Police Department on Friday afternoon provided further details into what led up to a Thursday night officer involved shooting in a Braum’s parking lot near Harry and Rock Road in southeast Wichita. Police said the incident started as a domestic violence call. Specifically, they said 34-year-old George Phillips reportedly was threatening to kill a woman and her children.

“A caller had reported her friend, a 37-year-old female, was being threatened by her ex-husband, a 34-year-old male. The caller indicated to officers that the male had a firearm and threatened to kill the female and her children,” Wichita police said. “Before arrival at the initial call location, officers received additional information that the suspect and victim had left and driven to a business in the 2600 block of South Rock Road. Officers received further information that the suspect and victim were involved in an active physical altercation inside their vehicle, which was in the restaurant’s parking lot.”

The woman was in the car with Phillips when officers arrived on the scene in the Braum’s parking lot. They said Phillips was trying to restrain the woman, keeping her from getting out of the car. Officers tried to physically remove Phillips from the car. The woman escaped safely when officers opened the door. Police said Phillips had a gun on him. Thursday, police confirmed that officers later discovered it was a BB gun that had the appearance of a deadly weapon. We know that officers fired several rounds, wounding Phillips. Phillips is in the hospital and is expected to survive, police said. Police said Phillips will be booked into the Sedgwick County Jail after his release from the hospital.

“The officers gave (Phillips) commands to exit the car, and while doing so, they observed a firearm in his hand. They gave multiple commands for him to drop the weapon, but he did not comply,” police said.

Police said Phillips was released from prison in December and is currently on parole. Records show several convictions in Sedgwick County, dated from December 2006 to May 2011. Most of those past convictions were for aggravated robbery. Past convictions against Phillips also include drug possession, escaping from custody and criminal possession of a firearm.

Wichita police said the three officers involved in the shooting have been with the department for two months, two years, and four years respectively. The WPD said the investigation is ongoing and the case will be presented to the Sedgwick County District Attorney’s Office.

“The e WPD has requested the assistance of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation to provide accountability and transparency,” the department said.

Although Thursday night was an extreme example of domestic violence calls that police respond to, experts say they are seeing more of them. One domestic violence shelter in Wichita said it’s seen an increase in the intensity and frequency of domestic violence over the past year.

“We’re seeing a lot of people who are coming in with a lot more injuries,” said Harbor House Program Director Keri McGregor.

The Harbor House said it’s seen about double the calls during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are a victim of domestic violence, Harbor House points out that there are resources and people who want to help.

“We provided shelter support for families that are fleeing the home, but we also provide a lot of outreach services for the community to help families with safety planning or the court process,” McGregor said.

in Thursday night’s case, the family of the woman who escaped from Phillips said they are thankful that she is alive.

Thursday, March 18, 2021:

Update 10 p.m.: A domestic violence case led to an officer-involved shooting Thursday night in southeast Wichita. Wichita police said it started with a man threatening a woman and children. Police said the woman called 911 and led police to the parking lot of the Braums restaurant near Harry and Rock Road.

On that call, reported a little before 9 p.m., police said the woman got away from the scene and a man identified as the suspect in this case showed a gun. Officers fired. In a briefing about an hour after the shooting happened, police said it was undetermined if the suspect also fired. The suspect was taken to a local hospital with multiple gunshot wounds. Police said he is expected to survive. The woman who fled from the suspect’s vehicle was not injured.

The area of Harry and Rock Road is closed and likely will remain shut off for at least a few hours into early Friday morning. Later in the morning Friday, we expect further details from the investigation into this case. Look for those updates here, on wwwkwch.com and on air on KWCH 12.

Update: A man was injured in an officer-involved shooting near Harry and Rock Road in southeast Wichita. It happened a little before 9 p.m. Eyewitness News learned the man’s injuries were serious and he was transported to a local hospital.

We have a crew on scene to gather further information from police on what led up to the shooting.

Wichita police are on the scene of a shooting near Harry and Rock Road in southeast Wichita. Sedwick County dispatchers say to avoid the area where there’s an active scene with traffic being blocked.

Eyewitness News sent a crew to the scene. Watch for updates, here on kwch.com and on Eyewitness News at 9 and 10.

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