06/13/2006

N.C. officer shoots man during standoff

From Staff Reports
The News and Observer
Copyright 2006 The News and Observer 

DURHAM- A Durham man was shot by a police officer during a standoff Monday afternoon on East Geer Street, but his injuries did not appear to be life-threatening.

Christopher Thomas Vaughn, 20, was talking when he was taken to Duke Hospital with a gunshot wound to the face, police said in a news release.

Officer H.L. Davis, who has been a Durham police officer for seven years, has been placed on administrative duty with pay, which is standard procedure in an officer-involved shooting, the release said.

The incident started at 10:32 a.m. when officers were called to the Biscuitville at 1806 Holloway St. Two people said they were in line at the drive-through when a man in a burgundy Dodge Durango pulled up next to them, pointed a gun and accused them of robbing his mother.

Officer C.L. Harrell arrived and tried to stop the Durango, but the driver sped away, the release said. The Durango struck a vehicle on East Main Street near Gary Street and then traveled through Woodlawn Cemetery.

Officers then spotted the Durango near a business at Hardee and Geer streets. As officers approached, the driver jumped out and police chased him across a creek and into the woods near Tobacco Road. Several minutes later officers spotted a man matching the suspect's description near Cheek Road.

Officers chased the man, who ran into Ace Radiator & Muffler at 910 E. Geer St. and locked himself in a bathroom. Police evacuated the business and blocked off a section of East Geer Street near Miami Boulevard.

The man, later identified as Vaughn, told officers several times that he was going to harm himself.

He spoke for a while with police negotiators, but he refused to come out of the bathroom. Once he stopped talking, members of the Police Department's Selective Enforcement Team entered the building.

SET officers ordered him several times to come out and then sent pepper spray under the bathroom door. When Vaughn still did not come out, officers entered the bathroom about 2:30 p.m. Vaughn was shot by Davis during the entry.

The incident is being investigated by the Police Department's Criminal Investigations Division and the State Bureau of Investigation, which is the usual procedure in an officer-involved shooting.

The release did not say whether Vaughn had a weapon or what provoked the shooting, and police spokesman Kammie Michael said she could not discuss what happened.

"Right now the circumstances surrounding the shooting are under investigation by the SBI, so we are not releasing any details," she said in an e-mail message.

Durham police have shot and killed two people in the past 11 months.

On March 10, Javan Johnson was shot at 1835 Cheek Road.

On July 8, 2005, Arvie Lee Fudge Jr. was shot at 700 Morreene Road. 
 
June 13, 2006

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