Springfield, Ohio — A shootout between officers and a suspect in an Ohio trailer park that claimed the life of Deputy Suzanne Hopper was captured on video by a local TV affiliate.
In the video below from WDTN Dayton, a brief, intense gunbattle is captured, during which German Township patrolman Jeremy Blum is struck in the arm while trying to retrieve Hopper's body.
They shall return: Suspects returning to crime scenes
By Lt. Dan Marcou
At 1125 hours on New Year’s Day, Deputy Suzanne Waughtel-Hopper was dispatched to a report of shots fired at the Enon Beach Trailer Park in Clark County, Ohio. The suspect was not located, but apparently Deputy Waughtel-Hopper discovered foot prints she considered interesting enough to photograph. She obtained her camera and began taking photos of a print she believed belonged to the suspect.
Shots Fired: A Mother of Two is Down Without warning, 57-year-old Michael Ferryman — who as usual, was described by one neighbor as “a nice man” — suddenly swung open his trailer door. Without hesitation he aimed a shotgun at the Deputy, fired, and fatally wounded her.
Deputy Waughtel-Hopper never had the opportunity to defend herself.
"He was itching to get her," resident Angelina Inman told The Associated Press. "He kept radioing in, can he please get her, and he was told no because it wasn't secure. You could see that male sheriff crying — he wanted to get her, he wanted to get her bad."
The standoff started after Deputy Suzanne Hopper was called to the Enon Beach trailer park to investigate a report of gunshots, authorities say. Hopper, who was married last year and had two children, was shot dead as she tried to photograph a footprint at the park, about 50 miles west of Columbus.
Sheriff Gene Kelly told reporters at a Sunday news conference that Hopper and the officer who accompanied her to the trailer park believed the shooter was no longer in the area when they began their investigation. Then, Kelly said, Ferryman's trailer door opened near Hopper.
"One shotgun blast was fired at a very close proximity, striking the deputy, and it was a fatal wound," he said.
Kelly has said responding police officers tried to talk to Ferryman — who had "a history" with the sheriff's office — when he fired on them from inside the trailer. A German Township officer was wounded in the ensuing gunbattle, in which "many, many, many" shots were fired by the suspect and eight officers, Kelly said.
The wounded officer, Blum, was listed in fair condition Sunday at a Dayton hospital.
Authorities had yet to determine whether police gunfire killed Ferryman or he killed himself.