By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
A Casper police officer on Thursday shot and killed a man who tried to drive away from a traffic stop with the police officer in the vehicle, according to the Casper Police Department.
Around 4 a.m. Thursday, Casper officers stopped a vehicle and approached it to speak with its two occupants, the department said.
At one point, the driver unexpectedly exited the vehicle and the passenger moved into the driver’s seat in an attempt to flee the scene. One of the officers tried to stop the vehicle by getting into it, however, the person by then driving the car accelerated from the scene at a high speed.
While inside the car, the officer ordered the new driver to stop. Eventually, the driver drove the vehicle onto the oncoming traffic lane of Interstate 25.
The officer eventually fired his weapon at the person driving the vehicle and safely stopped the car along the side of the interstate.
The suspect was pronounced deceased at the Wyoming Medical Center Thursday morning. The officer in the vehicle did not sustain any serious injuries.
The second officer, who stayed behind with the car’s original driver, was uninjured and did not fire his weapon.
In accordance with department policy, the investigation has been turned over to the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigations. Both officers have been placed on administrative leave for the time being.