Man shot by police during W. Wichita chase faces several charges

WICHITA, Kan. Update Thursday, Jan. 11:

Elijah Martinez appeared in court for the second time this week.

The Sedgwick County District Attorney's Office says Martinez was charged Thursday with attempted second-degree murder, three counts of aggravated assault of a law-enforcement officer, criminal discharge of a firearm, two alternative counts of fleeing or attempting to elude an officer, three counts of theft, criminal possession of a weapon by a convicted felon and three misdemeanor counts of criminal damage to property.

These charges are connected with a police chase last month in west Wichita. Wichita police say Martinez, 21, led them on a chase and fired shots at officers. Martinez was booked into jail Monday.


Update Tuesday, Jan. 9:

A man who police say led them on a chase and fired shots at officers has been booked into jail.

Jail records show Elijah Martinez was booked into jail Monday.

He had been hospitalized after being shot by an officer during the chase in late December.

Police were chasing Martinez because they believed he was stealing mail from another location.

He was booked into jail on several charges, including attempted capital murder, theft, burglary, aggravated assault of a law enforcement officer and several traffic charges.

Wichita police released a detailed account of how an officer-involved shooting and chase unfolded Wednesday morning.

Lt. Todd Ojile, with the Wichita Police Department, said around 9:55 a.m. a man called 911 and said he was following two people who were stealing mail in the 1500 block of N. Caddy.

The man followed the suspects through the neighborhood and gave dispatchers the car's description and tag number. Dispatchers confirmed the car had been stolen four hours earlier from a QuikTrip in east Wichita.

Ojile said the man followed the suspects onto southbound I-235 from 13th Street then exited at Central. The vehicle pulled into a business in the 700 block of N. Gilda. A woman went into the business first. A man followed a short time later.

Ojile said police were already en route to the location.

The first officer on the scene was a 23-year veteran with the Wichita Police Department. He made contact with the caller and the business owner who had come outside and said the suspects were inside.

The officer went inside and saw the male suspect in the hallway, the man turned the corner and the officer followed him. The man then pulled out a gun, pointed it at the officer and fired.

Ojile said the officer began looking for cover and exited the business. The man exited the business and fired several more rounds at the officer and incoming officers who were in the parking lot.

The suspect ran to the truck of the man who had placed the original call to 911. The truck's owner had left it sitting in the parking lot.

The suspect exited the parking lot and drove toward an officer who was located at Elm and Gilda. Ojile said the officer, who was fearful for his life, fired several shots at the suspect's truck.

The suspect drove westbound on Elm, through several yards and hit a fence before coming to a stop for a short period of time.

Ojile said a Patrol West supervisor who gave chase, stopped behind the suspect vehicle after it hit the fence and got out of his car. The truck was thrown into reverse and drove at the supervisor who fired one shot. The suspect continued westbound on Elm Street.

Ojile said the suspect came out on eastbound Central and started firing at westbound officers who were coming toward him. One round struck a business in the 5200 block of W. Central.

The chase continued throughout much of west Wichita.

In the 2200 block of W. Maple, a supervisor deployed stop sticks which impacted two of the truck's tires. The truck then swerved at the supervisor.

The chase continued at speeds of 80 to 100 mph on westbound Maple and ended at in the parking lot of a strip mall on the northwest corner of Maple and Maize.

A K-9 unit was deployed into the vehicle and police were able to pull the suspect from the vehicle at around 10:16 a.m. He was taken into custody.

Ojile said the man suffered one gunshot wound to the face and was taken to the hospital for treatment. Police believe he will be released from the hospital on Thursday.

Eyewitness News was able to confirm the suspect is 21-year-old Elijah Martinez.

Police determined the woman involved was a friend of Martinez's. She was also taken into custody after the suspect fled the scene. She was interviewed and booked into jail on outstanding warrants and several counts of theft.

The officers who fired shots in the case have been placed on paid administrative leave while the investigation is conducted - per the police department's policy.