GREAT FALLS – A man who reportedly brandished a gun at Great Falls police officers was shot and killed on Sunday evening.
The name of the man has not yet been released, nor have the names of any of the officers involved.
The incident began when officers responded to a residence in the Highwoods Mobile Home Park at 6:48 p.m. for a reported disturbance.
During the call to 911, dispatchers received information indicating the disturbance was escalating and required a highest priority police response.
When officers arrived, they encountered a man armed with a gun. The GFPD said in a Facebook post at 10:12 p.m. that when officers made contact with the man, he “brandished the gun, shots were exchanged, and he was fatally shot by our officers.”
Aaron Christensen was nearby when it happened: “It was pretty serious, you know. All of a sudden a bunch of other cops started showing up. I made sure everybody stayed inside, yelled at a few other people to, you know, back up. None of these trailers will stop bullets.”
GFPD Chief Bowen has requested that the Montana Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) lead the inquiry into the incident, which is standard in such situations.
Police also said that as officers were driving to the scene, displaying top lights and with an audible siren, one officer was involved in a two-vehicle automobile crash. The occupant of the private vehicle sustained minor injuries, and the officer sustained serious but non-life threatening injuries. Troopers with the Montana Highway Patrol are investigating the crash.
Police have not yet released any other information; we will update you as we get more information.
There have been four shootings of suspects in Great Falls within the last 18 months. In April 2017, a knife-wielding suspect was shot and injured by an officer. In September 2017, Jordan Addison died after being shot by a GFPD officer. In December 2017, Stacy Micheletti was shot and killed by police after he reportedly brandished a gun.
Reporting by Margaret DeMarco for MTN News