The officer wounded in a shootout with a suspect in east Casper on Sunday was struck by five or more bullets and remains in critical condition, the Casper Police Department said Monday.
The officer, whom police did not name, was taken to Wyoming Medical Center, where he received “immediate, life-saving treatment for his injuries,” the department said in a statement released Monday morning. That officer remains in critical condition and had received multiple blood transfusions by Monday afternoon.
“The extent of the Officer’s injuries are such that multiple shipments of blood and blood products were brought in to the Wyoming Medical Center by emergency ground and air transportation in order to replenish the local supplies of life-saving blood donations,” Casper Police Chief Keith McPheeters said in a statement. “Although the volume of blood loss undergone by the Officer has been slowed, blood loss continues to pose concerns for the Officer’s timely recovery.”
The man who fired at police died from gunshot wounds at the scene. Police say he unexpectedly drew a gun and fired at two officers who were responding to a vehicle complaint. The Natrona County Coroner’s Office identified him as 38-year-old David P. Wolosin of Casper. An autopsy is pending.
Casper’s United Blood Services clinic saw a flood of donations Monday, according to an afternoon news release provided by the clinic. More than 100 people donated blood at the Casper clinic Monday, an increase staff attributed to support for the injured officer.
“The entire Casper Police Department wishes to acknowledge the outpouring of support evident throughout the community,” McPheeters said. “We would like to thank the staff of the Wyoming Medical Center and the responding ambulance crew for their heroic efforts as they worked to render life-saving aid to our officer.”
Natrona County’s other law enforcement agencies covered calls in Casper on Monday, as they did Sunday evening.
“This assistance helps us continue to meet the needs of the officer and the rest of our patrol officers with no disruption in police services,” McPheeters said.
The department said it was not releasing the officer’s identity at this time out of respect for the officer’s family.
In a brief statement, Mayor Ray Pacheco asked Casper residents to pray for the city.
“As a man of faith and like many other people in Casper, I would suggest prayer for our city. I am asking those of faith to join with me to pray for healing for our injured officer and healing for our community,” Pacheco said in a news release. “Yesterday’s events have shaken all of us. I hope we can come together in prayer to support one another.”
Casper police posted a link to an online fundraiser on the department’s Facebook page Monday afternoon. People had donated more than $22,000 by about 6 p.m.
A police department spokesman Monday morning referred comment to the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation, which is examining the shootout. The DCI commander designated as press contact regarding the incident was not available for comment.
The shootout took place about 1:40 p.m. Sunday after officers responded to a vehicle complaint on the 1400 block of Fairdale Avenue. Neighbors and a lawyer representing the officers told the Star-Tribune that Wolosin was teaching two children to drive in a dirt lot near Fairdale Park, not far from the intersection of Beverly and 15th streets, when officers arrived.
The lawyer, Don Fuller, said Wolosin pulled a gun and shot one of the officers in the back. Four witnesses said they saw the man exchange gunfire with police before officers shot and killed him.
One neighbor said police pulled up in a parking lot above the dirt patch and shouted at Wolosin to stop the car.
Wolosin stopped and spoke to police, the neighbor said, then made a phone call.
The neighbor had turned around when he heard shots being fired. When the neighbor looked again, police were using Wolosin’s car as cover while they exchanged gunfire with the man.
Another neighbor heard gunshots and saw police crouching behind the car, exchanging gunfire with police. Wolosin continued to fire his gun even after being shot, the neighbor said.
One of the witnesses said the children were not hurt and were taken from the scene by their father.
Someone just became a millionaire and they might not even know it.
A Powerball lottery ticket worth $2 million was sold Saturday at the Maverik gas station along West Yellowstone Highway in Mills, according to a press release from the Wyoming Lottery Corporation.
The winner has yet to come forward to claim the prize.
The winning numbers from the May 5 drawing were 14, 29, 36, 57, 61 and the Powerball was 17. The ticket’s purchaser matched all five regular numbers, but not the Powerball.
This news comes just days after a Cowboy Draw lottery ticket worth $466,159 was purchased on Thursday at the Loaf’ N Jug along East Second Street in Casper.
This prize also had yet to be claimed.
“Having two big winners from the same [area] in a span of just a couple of days is a really exciting time for us,” Jon Clontz, CEO of WyoLotto, states in the release.
To celebrate, WyoLotto will be hosting two parties on May 21. The events are planned for 10 a.m. to noon at the Loaf ‘N Jug and from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Maverik.
More than 3 million ticket purchasers have won more than $42.5 million since the lottery launched almost four years ago, according to the release.
If you think you have a winning ticket, call the WyoLotto office at 855-995-6886.
An attorney representing police officers involved in Sunday’s shootout in Casper said the man who fired at police refused to talk, and when confronted by officers, pulled a gun and shot at them.
Don Fuller, who often represents police officers after shootings, said the man considered himself part of the sovereign citizenship movement. Sovereign citizens typically do not recognize the authority of federal, state or local governments.
“He fancied himself as sovereign,” Fuller said.
The man who fired at police died from gunshot wounds at the scene. Authorities identified him as David P. Wolosin, 38, of Casper.
Video taken during the shooting and obtained by the Star-Tribune shows Wolosin lying on his side, firing at officers who are crouched behind a white sedan. He pushes himself backward through the dirt while exchanging gunfire with police. Officers raise themselves above the trunk and hood of the vehicle to fire.
Wolosin is finally hit and lies motionless, the video, which was shot from across the street by a witness, shows.
The video below depicts the shooting. It may not be appropriate for all readers.
One of the officers was struck five times and taken to Wyoming Medical Center, where he received “immediate, life-saving treatment for his injuries,” the department said in a series of statements released Monday. That officer remained in critical condition Monday afternoon after receiving multiple blood transfusions.
Fuller told the Star-Tribune he visited the scene of the shooting on Sunday afternoon. The shootout took place in a dirt lot near Fairdale Park, not far from the intersection of Beverly and 15th streets.
The man who shot at police was teaching children, one as young as 3, to drive, Fuller said.
Two police officers arrived at the dirt lot on Sunday afternoon and confronted Wolosin because a child was driving a sedan under the man’s supervision, Fuller said. The man refused to talk to police and made a phone call. Wolosin took a couple of steps away from the officers, and when they tried to stop him, he turned, pulled a pistol and began firing, Fuller said. In a statement, the Casper Police Department said the man “unexpectedly” drew his gun.
While retreating, an officer was shot in the back, Fuller said. Police had not fired on the man before the officer was hit.
Fuller declined to name the officers who were involved.
When asked about officers taking cover behind a vehicle that was occupied by children, Fuller said, “there was no other option.”
The children were uninjured, according to an eyewitness who spoke the Star-Tribune on Sunday.
“That’s what we know so far: These officers were left with no choice and they acted heroically,” Fuller said.
The Southern Poverty Law Center states that sovereign citizens, “believe that they — not judges, juries, law enforcement or elected officials — get to decide which laws to obey and which to ignore.”
According to the FBI, sovereign citizens are “anti-government extremists,” who “believe they don’t have to answer to any government authority.”
Fuller’s account is the most detailed description of the moments leading up to the gunfight made public.
Neighbors gave accounts to the Star-Tribune on Sunday that were consistent with parts of the narrative provided by Fuller. They also described seeing Wolosin teaching two children to drive in the dirt lot.
One witness said police pulled up in a parking lot above the dirt patch and shouted at Wolosin to stop the car. The man stopped and spoke with the officers, then made a phone call, the witness said.
The neighbor had turned around when he heard shots being fired. When the neighbor looked again, police were using the Wolosin’s car as cover while they exchanged gunfire with the man. Wolosin was shot and fell.
Another neighbor said he heard gunshots and saw police crouching behind the car, exchanging gunfire with police. Wolosin continued to fire his gun even after being shot, the neighbor said.
The Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation is examining the shootout, as is typical when officers are involved in shootings. A DCI commander handling press inquiries was not available for comment Monday.
Sunday’s incident is the second police shooting in east Casper in just over two months. In late February, police shot and killed a man carrying a sword after he threatened a clerk at a gas station on 15th Street and Wyoming Boulevard. Natrona County District Attorney Michael Blonigen cleared the two officers who were involved and concluded the man, Douglas Oneyear, provoked the confrontation in an effort to end his life. Fuller represented the officers involved in that shooting.
Oneyear’s family maintains the officers could have resolved the situation without killing him.