Wichita police chief addresses deadly 'swatting' shooting

Published: Jan. 5, 2018 at 12:32 PM CST
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Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay appeared at Friday morning's police briefing to address a deadly officer-involved shooting that stemmed from a "swatting" call.

It was the first time the chief talked about the incident on camera, more than a week after it happened.

Eyewitness News asked Ramsay about the others involved in the online gaming fight that led to the call. He said other people are being interviewed in connection with the case but said no other arrests have been made.

"This is a serious case that has wide-ranging implications. There also is not clear laws for this type of activity as well which adds to the difficulties of it. Because of the complexities of the online activity that took place that also takes more time. So, it's a complex case," he said.

A Wichita police officer shot and killed Andrew Finch on Dec. 28 at a home near Seneca and McCormick.

Police responded to what they thought was a murder and hostage situation.

Police say the officer fired after several commands were shouted at Finch to keep his hands up. They say Finch moved his hands toward his waist then brought them up leading the officer to believe he had a weapon. Finch was not armed.

Police released seven seconds of bodycam video from the incident.

We asked the chief if more will be released and he said it will not.

"The video that was released gave the most of what occurred," he said. "The other footage doesn't show what is seen. The people are behind cover or at locations where nothing can be seen."

He also talked about the impact of the shooting on the city and his department.

"Police are here to protect and serve and trust with the community is critical and in cases of use of force, in particular, officer-involved shootings, it does, it shakes everybody involved. This is a terrible tragedy, not only, obviously for the family, that will forever impact them, but also for the community as well as police staff that will carry this burden for the rest of their lives as well," said Ramsay.

The chief said he does not plan to release the name of the officer involved and a change in that practice would have to be negotiated with the police department's labor contract or come from state lawmakers.

The chief said his department will conduct an internal review once the criminal investigation is done. He said they want to prevent something like this from happening again.

"We always review anytime an officer uses a firearm thoroughly and in many different ways. There's always an internal review and the DA also reviews those for compliance with the law. So each of those are also being reviewed criminally and internally to ensure the actions were consistent with policies.," he said.

The district attorney's office will determine what charges could be filed and whether the officer's actions were justified.

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