Howard County Sherrif’s Deputy Carl Koontz died Sunday afternoon due to injuries sustained while serving a search warrant related to drug paraphernalia charges earlier that morning. Koontz’ partner, Sgt. Jordan Buckley, was also shot during the encounter; however, Officer Buckley remains at IU Health Methodist Hospital, listed in stable condition.
The suspected shooter, currently unnamed, was killed following a gun-battle with a team of local Swat units. It is not known whether the deceased gunman was the intended target of the search warrant or simply an armed accomplice to the primary suspect.
Concerning specifics of the incident, Howard County Sherrif Steven Rogers told Fox News the following.
“We’re really not certain on the exact identity of this individual. We’ve been told that the name on the warrant may not correspond with the name of the individual in the trailer. Again, we’re waiting to find that information out.”
The main suspect was wanted in nearby Clinton County for illegal syringe possession. After learning of the suspect’s location, a warrant for arrest was obtained by the Howard County Sherrif’s Department. The deadly standoff occurred at a Russiaville mobile-home park, located in Russiaville Indiana.
Howard County Sherrif Steven Rogers stated both Deputy Koontz and Sergeant Buckley were wearing standard, department-approved body armor as they approached the entrance of the Howard County mobile home. When the two officers knocked on the suspect’s door, no answer was provided. It was then that Koontz and Buckley entered the residence via force and the fatal shooting ensued.
Concerning the aftermath of the initial round of shootings, a spokesperson for the Indiana State Police went on to tell the IndyStar the following.
“A Russiaville officer and other deputies were able to extract the wounded officers from the residence and provide first aid. Both Koontz and Buckley were transported initially to Howard Regional Hospital, stabilized and then airlifted to IU Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis.”
Unfortunately, following emergency surgery, 27-year-old Sherrif’s Deputy Carl Koontz was pronounced dead.
In wake of the first stand-off, SWAT units from the Indiana State Police, Howard County, and Kokomo County began an attempt to stabalize and talk down the shooting suspect. However, these negotiation efforts failed. Around 2:30 a.m. on Sunday morning, the SWAT teams had confirmed that the suspect was deceased inside the residence.
After this tragic event, a motorcade procession comprised of local law enforcement accompanied Koontz’ body from IU Health Methodist Hospital to the Marion County Coroner’s office.
Indiana Governor Mike Pence ordered that state flags be lowered to half-mast until sunset on the evening of Deputy Koontz’ funeral. Gov. Pence had these comments concerning Koontz’ honor and bravery for the IndyStar.
“Indiana will always honor the memory of Deputy Koontz and will always be grateful for his courageous service. Deputy Koontz lost his life in the line of duty and his passing reminds us all of the courage and risk that every member of our law enforcement community and their families face every day in the defending our communities.”
The Indiana Governer then offered these words concerning 35-year-old Sgt. Jordan J. Buckley, who was wounded in Sunday’s incident.
“We also offer our gratitude and prayers to Sergeant Jordan Buckley who was injured during the same incident in the line of duty. We are grateful for his courage and pray that he will make a quick recovery from his injuries and be restored soon to his family and his service to the people of Howard County.”
Sgt. Buckley has served nine years with his department. The deceased Karl Koontz had garnered nearly three years of service with the Howard County Sherrif’s Office. Koontz is survived by his wife Cassie and son Noah.
Concerning the death of Deputy Koontz, as well as other officers killed in the line of duty, state Senator Joe Donnely proclaimed, “Every day, law enforcement officers across our state and our country get up, go to work, and put their lives on the line to keep us safe. This tragedy is a reminder of that dedication, and of our obligation to honor their service.”