‘This wasn’t supposed to happen’: Fiancee of man shot by police said she wanted 911 call to get him help

The fiancee of a 34-year-old man involved in a fatal confrontation with police Monday said officers came in response to a 911 call from a neighbor because he was threatening to hurt himself and she was frightened.

Kristopher Kody Handy, 34, was fatally shot by multiple police officers just after 2:30 a.m. outside the West Anchorage apartment he shared with fiancee Harmony Stitt and three children.

With the front of the building lit up by police spotlights, Handy asked for a kiss and then walked out of the apartment shirtless and carrying the shotgun, Stitt said Friday.

Handy was dead moments later.

“This wasn’t supposed to happen,” she said. “None of this was supposed to happen at all.”

Her account comes amid growing scrutiny of the department’s response in the wake of home security camera footage that appears to call into question some of the initial police descriptions of the encounter.

The shooting was the first in Anchorage involving officers wearing body-worn cameras but police this week said they don’t plan to release any footage of the encounter until an investigation is complete.


In a written statement on Monday, Police Chief Bianca Cross said Handy had “raised a long gun” toward officers responding to a disturbance call involving a man and a woman before four officers fired, killing him. She repeated the statement in a media briefing. The statement also said someone had told police that Handy was outside the building with a long gun and that he received “immediate” first aid after the shooting.

The home surveillance video indicates he was inside the apartment when officers arrived. It also shows officers not starting CPR on his body for 5 minutes, according to Virginia Miller, an apartment resident who posted the video.

Police declined to answer most questions Friday, including whether they were aware that Handy may have been suicidal, citing an ongoing internal investigation and an inquiry by the state Office of Special Prosecutions.

By Friday, there was little sign of the shooting at the apartment building. A neighbor to Handy’s unit said police had taken two pieces of a railing struck by bullets as evidence, including near an upstairs apartment window.

There are 8 units in the building with 27 tenants, 13 of them children, according to Miller, who said she decided to post the graphic footage on a newly created Facebook group called “Anchorage Police Accountability” after hearing the chief’s description of the encounter at the Monday briefing.

“That’s not what happened at all,” she said.

A new, slightly longer video she posted Friday shows police calling for Handy to come out of the apartment with his hands up. He walks out, appears to curse, and walks down a short set of stairs with something in his right hand. He is facing away from the camera. Police fire at least 10 shots at him, and he can be seen falling to the ground. The video doesn’t make it clear whether Handy was raising the gun.

Cross in a statement posted to the department’s website on Thursday took the unusual step of responding to concerns raised about the video, saying it “appears to many to differ from the initial statement we provided regarding the event.”

In the statement, Cross also acknowledged that initial police accounts of events are sometimes later found to be inaccurate. The information about the raised gun came from “the initial account of a witness,” she wrote. But the statement also said that videos don’t capture the entire event or the “human element of those involved” including what they see, hear, and know.

The video was captured by a security camera inside her unit, Miller said. She said her dog’s barking woke her up before the shooting, and on her camera she saw someone she recognized as Handy walking in the road, clearly upset and with something in his hand but not “pointing it or waving it around.” Then he went back upstairs into his apartment, she said.

Miller said she thought the situation was resolved until two police vehicles, headlights off, pulled into the driveway. She said that happened about 90 seconds before the shooting.

Police have said the disturbance call came in at 2:01 a.m., dispatchers were alerted that Handy had a weapon at 2:19 a.m., officers arrived at 2:21 a.m. and the shooting occurred at 2:38 a.m.

Miller said she’s watched the video at half speed and replayed it over and over.

“I never saw him point the gun,” she said. “I never thought he was being threatening toward police at all.”

Several residents said it was traumatizing, especially for children, to see Handy’s body exposed for hours after the shooting with a screen placed later in the morning that blocked the view from the road but not the apartments. A police spokeswoman on Friday said crime scene investigators follow procedures to gather evidence without destroying or compromising it, and the time that takes is different from case to case.

Stitt, in an interview Friday, said she and Handy met in January 2022. They have a 1-year-old daughter, who he loved, as he did Stitt’s three children as well as his family, she said. She said she’s pregnant and due in early January.

She described him as intelligent and funny, a guy with a big personality who grew up in the villages around King Salmon and moved to Anchorage, attending Dimond High School where he played football and basketball and served as the mascot. He worked various jobs including at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport before he got a commercial driver’s license and drove for several companies, she said.


Stitt said things turned bad between the couple on Sunday after they got some potentially bad news about her pregnancy that turned out to be false. She’d planned to go to Seward on Monday and Handy wanted her to stay home, she said. He had struggled with depression that seemed to worsen in recent days, she said. He wasn’t sleeping.

By early Monday morning, she said, Handy was talking about harming himself. Stitt said she messaged a neighbor and asked her to call 911 because he was scaring her.

She didn’t see what happened after Handy left the unit because of the bright lights and then police officers pushed her back into the unit so she couldn’t see his body, Stitt said.

The gun Handy was carrying didn’t work, she said, because the firing pin had been removed.

“I just wanted him to have help,” she said. “He didn’t want to die. This wasn’t a man that wanted to die.”

— Daily News reporter Tess Williams contributed to this story.

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Zaz Hollander

Zaz Hollander is a veteran journalist based in the Mat-Su and is currently an ADN local news editor and reporter. She covers breaking news, the Mat-Su region, aviation and general assignments. Contact her at