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Crime & Courts

Law enforcement officers exchange gunfire with driver in Dillingham, troopers say

  • Author: Anchorage Daily News
  • Updated: February 18
  • Published February 18

Law enforcement officers exchanged gunfire Thursday with the driver of a vehicle stuck in a ditch in Dillingham after the driver — who was believed to be armed — tried to flee the scene, Alaska State Troopers said.

The driver was taken into custody hours later and treated for injuries, though the precise nature of the injuries wasn’t immediately clear from troopers’ online report. No law enforcement officers were hurt.

Shortly after 11:30 a.m. Thursday, Dillingham police received a report of a vehicle in a ditch, troopers said. Police dispatch spoke with the driver, who said that “he had a rifle and ammunition in his possession,” according to troopers.

Dillingham police — who had requested assistance from troopers — arrived at the scene, where the driver was trying to flee but wasn’t able to get the vehicle out of the ditch, troopers said. Officers from both agencies responded, according to troopers, and troopers told police dispatch at 12:31 p.m. that shots were fired. The troopers’ report did not say who fired first.

“After an exchange of gunfire, DPD and Troopers were able to safely retreat and setup a perimeter near the vehicle,” troopers said in the report, which was posted just before 5 p.m. Thursday. The hospital went into lockdown “as a precaution.”

Dillingham police, troopers and Southcentral Special Emergency Reaction Team members took the driver into custody shortly after 5:30 p.m., according to troopers.

The names of the officers who fired their weapons will be withheld for 72 hours in accordance with Dillingham police and Alaska Department of Public Safety policy, troopers said. Troopers did not identify the driver in their report, which didn’t include further details about the circumstances surrounding the shooting.

“Investigators from the Alaska Bureau of Investigation are processing the scene and the investigation continues,” troopers said.