UPDATE: Man Killed In Officer-Involved Shooting - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Deadly Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation Continues

UPDATE: On Wednesday investigators continued to interview both citizen and officer witnesses after Monday night's officer-involved shooting at 7th and Hatch.

James E. Rogers was shot and killed during an armed confrontation with police. The suicidal man was fleeing officers at his workplace when he crashed his van and refused repeated requests to disarm himself and surrender.

On Tuesday, investigators completed a canvass of the neighborhood and gathered witness accounts from residents who heard or saw portions of the two-hour standoff. Detectives also completed interviews with Rogers' co-workers at SL Start, an assisted-living facility located at 811 S. Hatch. 

A sheriff's K-9 team searched the SL Start parking lot Tuesday and found a shotgun wad not far from where witnesses placed Rogers' van prior to him fleeing. A witness had reported hearing a gunshot prior to SPD officers' arrival at the business Monday evening.

Investigators have recovered the man's shotgun. They obtained a search warrant for the van Wednesday morning and were in the process of searching it at noon.

Interviews with some officers involved in the incident were conducted Tuesday and the remaining officer interviews were being scheduled Wednesday.

The investigation is being conducted by the Spokane Investigative Regional Response Team which includes detectives from the Spokane County Sheriff's Office, Spokane Police Department and Washington State Patrol.

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SPOKANE, Wash. – The family of James Rogers, a man who was shot and killed in an officer-involved shooting Monday night, said their son and brother was a troubled man who had a history of mental problems and alcoholism.

Rogers, 45, of Spokane Valley, died Monday night when a Spokane Police Officer fired at least six rounds at Rogers at the end of a two hour standoff on the lower South Hill.

Earlier that day, Rogers went to S.L. Start and made suicidal threats. Rogers had worked there as a caregiver for the developmentally disabled.  His family said Rogers had struggled with alcoholism and depression for many years. They believe he went to his workplace looking for help and believed he had no intention of hurting anyone.

It's unclear how long he stayed at S.L. Start but a short time later he got back into a van he had stolen from his dad earlier in the day.  He had also stolen his dad's shotgun, according to his family.

Nearby, on 8th and Hatch, Jean Reid was inside her home when she "heard a gunshot at about 6:30," Reid said. "It was really loud, really loud; enough to scare you."

Reid said she looked out of her window but didn't notice anything suspicious. All she saw were parked cars, including a van.  Unbeknownst to her, Rogers was inside that van.

But someone else saw Rogers. According to police, a complainant in the area called 911 saying that she saw a man in a parking lot armed with a shotgun. That witness believed Rogers had shot himself.

That call came in at 6:28pm.

Rogers was still alive, however.

Shortly thereafter, police swarmed the neighborhood. At that moment, Reid said she walked out to her car to see a policeman with a "big gun" climbing up a rockwall in her yard, which sat adjacent to the parking lot where Rogers was parked.

"Then we knew there was a gun and there was trouble," Reid said.

Spokane Police officers began swarming the area. They used a patrol car to block the parking lot exit, but investigators said Rogers backed into a brick wall and then drove across a lawn to avoid the patrol car and escape. Police said he drove north on Hatch, but rolled the van onto its side when he attempted to turn onto East Seventh.

"It's a surprise; we haven't been in this neighborhood long," another neighbor told KHQ.

"It was getting dark and it was just getting more scary," Reid continued.

The Spokane Police Department SWAT Team, the Explosives Disposal Unit's robot as well as the Spokane County Sheriff's helicopter, Air One were called in to help. For about two hours, negotiators tried to get Rogers to come out of the van but they say he stayed inside anyway, moving around and refusing requests to surrender.

At 8:24 p.m., one officer fire six shots, killing Rogers.

Investigators from the Spokane County Sheriff's Office, Spokane Police Department and Washington State Patrol have been assigned are working on the officer-involved shooting in a joint investigation.

The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office confirmed Tuesday that Rogers died from multiple gunshot wounds but employees would not say how many.

S.L. Start declined to comment Tuesday.

Witnesses Sought in Monday Night Shooting:

In a press release, investigators also stated that arrangements were being made to conduct interviews with the more than 20 officers who were at the scene of the shooting Monday night.  Meanwhile, other detectives are actively searching for witnesses who had not already contacted by officers Monday.

Witnesses who saw or heard anything are urged to come forward for interviews. Call Crime Check at 456-2233.

This story was filed by KHQ Local News reporter Chelsea Kopta

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