Neb. officer shoots knife-wielding man
By LORI PILGER
Lincoln Journal Star
LINCOLN, Neb. — A Lincoln police officer called to a disturbance at 1745 A St. at about 1:15 Friday morning fatally shot a 38-year-old man armed with a knife.
Scott Gannon was taken by ambulance to BryanLGH Medical Center West, where he died two hours later.
By state law, the death triggers a grand jury investigation and appointment of a special prosecutor.
Early Friday morning, dispatchers sent police to the house on A Street on a report of a disturbance.
The caller told a 911 dispatcher the father of her sister’s kids was at the house, intoxicated and refusing to leave, Police Chief Tom Casady said.
An officer on his way to the call saw a car driving erratically and stopped a suspected drunken driver, who pulled over right in front of the house.
As the officer talked to the driver, a woman came out of the house and called his attention to Gannon, who was at the steps of the house with a knife, Casady said.
Gannon allegedly made threatening moves toward the officer, who shot him, the chief said.
He wouldn’t say how many shots the officer fired or where Gannon was shot and described the investigation into the shooting as continuing.
He said his office may be able to release additional details about the circumstances as early as today.
“On these cases we’re very cautious in jumping to any conclusions before we’ve had a chance to assess all the facts,” Casady said.
He said the officer, a 10-year veteran of the Lincoln Police Department, has been placed on administrative leave during the internal investigation, pursuant to department policy.
“It’s been a good long time since we’ve had an officer-involved fatal shooting here in Lincoln,” Casady said.
The last was in August 1992, when Sgt. Kent Woodhead shot and killed Seth Whiteface, 38, outside a downtown Valentino’s after Whiteface pointed what turned out to be a toy gun at Woodhead.
On Friday afternoon, a woman who answered the door at the A Street house declined to comment about the incident.
Police said they had no permanent address for Gannon, a registered sex offender who was released from the Seward County Jail Dec. 27.
He was sentenced to a year in jail Aug. 27 on a misdemeanor child abuse charge and given credit for 123 days already served. The charge was amended from a felony.
Gannon had been arrested in Lincoln three times and cited 10 times since 1987.
On April 16, 2005, he was picked up on suspicion of first-degree sexual assault of a child, attempted sexual assault of a child and two counts of child abuse. He pleaded no contest to two charges each of child abuse and attempted sexual assault of a child and was sentenced Jan. 3, 2006, to 1½ years and ordered to register as a sex offender.
In 2001, Gannon was arrested on suspicion of refusing to comply with an order of an officer. He was fined $150 fine for entering a vehicle without permission.
In 1987, Gannon, then 17, was arrested by Lincoln police for disturbing the peace. He was fined $100.
Copyright © 2002-2008 Lincoln Journal Star
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