Sheridan To Waive Dump Fees, Help With Rebuild Of Destroyed Standoff House

The Sheridan City Council voted Monday to waive roughly $11,000 in permitting and dump fees for a local woman whose house was destroyed during a prolonged standoff with a suspected cop killer.

CM
Clair McFarland

February 27, 20244 min read

After a 32-hour standoff between law enforcement and a man suspected of killing a local police officer, the Sheridan home he barricaded himself in shows the extensive damage done to it during attempts to get to the suspect.
After a 32-hour standoff between law enforcement and a man suspected of killing a local police officer, the Sheridan home he barricaded himself in shows the extensive damage done to it during attempts to get to the suspect. (James Garden via Facebook)

The Sheridan City Council voted Monday night to waive roughly $11,000 in permitting and dump costs for the woman whose house was destroyed during a 32-hour armed standoff between police and a suspected cop killer.

“It’s just been a horrible incident that happened, and we’re just trying to heal some wounds and try to help the lady with her house,” Sheridan Mayor Richard Bridger told Cowboy State Daily on Tuesday. “So, it’s all just a process, but we’ll get there. I’m confident of that.”

Since the standoff, many Sheridan residents have been critical of the city and local police for going to that extreme to get to the suspect. The city said in a statement this week it hasn’t abandoned the homeowner and is actively helping her.

This $11,050

In its public meeting Monday, the Sheridan City Council agreed unanimously to waive $3,050 in building permit fees and the expected landfill fees of about $8,000 for Karo Hamilton, the homeowner whose house was destroyed.

Hanns Mercer, Sheridan Public Works director, told the council the home was “partly demolished” during the standoff but is now unsalvageable.

It’s set to be razed soon, he said.

Bridger asked if the foundation would hold, and Mercer recommended it to be removed. The house was built in 1920, and it’s time for “probably an entire new footprint to be built.”

Bridger made a statement after the vote, saying the city has mobilized its resources and is performing “many tasks not visible to the public” to help Hamilton.

“We ask for your patience as we identify the necessary steps and legal processes that must be taken as information becomes available,” said Bridger. “This tragedy, though heartbreaking, reinforces our resolve to serve our community with more vigor and empathy.”

The Fire Department

Bridger told Cowboy State Daily one of those tasks not visible to the public happened last week, when Sheridan Fire Department personnel went to the home and used a bucket truck to help Hamilton retrieve “some of her more personal items, and precious items she wanted to see kept and preserved.”

‘Coordinating’

Bridger said the city’s goal is to help make Hamilton “whole,” but said it’s too early to commit to an exact plan for doing that.

Currently, the city is working with her insurance company and local contractors that have expressed an interest in volunteering or helping with the demolition and rebuild.

The city has obtained permission to remove the old house, he said, adding that multiple companies have stepped up and offered to help.

Next, the city plans to coordinate the rebuild and work with private companies in that effort as well, said Bridger.

“As I understand it, she has insurance on part of the house, but then I don’t know with the current pricing of housing, I don’t know that she has enough insurance to replace the house,” said Bridger. “We want to make her whole when it’s all said and done.”

Whether making her “whole” also could include any payment to make up for potential losses remains unclear.

Hamilton did not respond to a voicemail request for comment by publication time Tuesday.

Two Days Of Standoff

The standoff started Feb. 13, after Sheridan resident William Lowery reportedly shot and killed Sheridan Police Sgt. Nevada Krinkee, then fled.

Krinkee had been trying to serve a trespass notice at the rental home from which a judge had evicted Lowery the day before.

Lowery took refuge in Karo Hamilton’s nearby home. Lowery knew a tenant living in Hamilton’s basement, but he was a stranger to Hamilton, Hamilton’s daughter told Cowboy State Daily later that week.  

Over the next 32 hours, tactical teams from around Wyoming surrounded the home, shot it with gas projectiles, lobbed in gas grenades, blasted water in through a door, broke windows and ultimately carved open a wall and roof portion with a track hoe excavator.

Lowery had reportedly fired on police multiple times during the standoff. He tried to flee, armed, in the late afternoon of Feb. 14, but an agent shot him and he died on scene.

Krinkee’s funeral is set for Friday at 1 p.m. at the Bruce Hoffman Golden Dome on the Sheridan College campus.

Clair McFarland can be reached at Clair@CowboyStateDaily.com.

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CM

Clair McFarland

Crime and Courts Reporter