Spine-tingling video footage shows the tense moment Kansas cops approached a rifle-wielding man hiding in a backyard shed – leading to a shootout that left an officer critically injured.
Gunman Tyler Hodge, 28, was fatally shot Saturday night by Wichita police after he unloaded 18 rounds in a suburban yard, shooting one veteran cop multiple times and also hitting a patrol car and three neighborhood homes, police said in a Sunday briefing.
He’d told people in the past that he wanted to be killed by police, authorities said.
Edited bodycam footage shows officers in a backyard looking for Hodge after an alleged confrontation with a 32-year-old woman at about 10:30 p.m. They approach a shed with flashlights and swing open the unlatched door to find Hodge staring back blankly with a gun in his hands.
“Put the gun down! Put the gun down!” an officer yells with escalating urgency.
Hodge, wearing a tank top and shorts, holds the gun to the ground with its barrel pointed upwards. He’s seen rising to his feet and readying the gun as the officers jump away from the open door while Hodge can be heard firing two blasts from the rifle.
The footage does not show the moment Hodge shoots an officer, one of many who responded as backup after the initial shots were fired.
“The injured officer fired many times in return and officers were able to pull him to safety,” Deputy Chief Jose Salcido said during the briefing. The officer, who wasn’t identified, was listed in critical but stable condition.
Neither does the bodycam footage show when Hodge is fatally shot by a single bullet from one of the other officers.
But the video shows an officer in front of the home ducking behind a police car as shots echo through the night, apparently hitting the vehicle.
“We’ve got more shots fired,” the officer can be heard saying.
Police had come to the home to do a welfare check on a report that a woman was yelling for help and might be in danger. At the house, the 32-year-old woman explained she’d had some interaction with Hodge that scared her 13-year-old daughter.
Hodge had left, but police searched the grounds when they saw his car was still at the home, cops said in their news briefing. After the shootout, three officers were placed on administrative leave as is routine for police-involved shootings, the deputy chief said.
A handgun was later found in the shed, Salcido said.
Family said the shooter had a history of mental issues. Cousin Courtney Hodge told KWCH she had spoken with him the day of the shooting and felt something was wrong.
“More demons had been expressed to me than I knew he was dealing with and it all sums up to where he felt he was alone,” she told the station.