The Edmond Sun

March 14, 2012

Police call Edmond shooting attempted 'suicide by cop'

Police ID officer involved, shooting victim

Mark Schlachtenhaufen
The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — An officer involved shooting at an Edmond shopping area is being called an attempted “suicide by cop,” a police spokeswoman said Wednesday.

Police spokeswoman Glynda Chu said the suspect is Ricky Allen Elder, 28, of Edmond. Elder was transported by EMSA to OU Medical Center-Presbyterian Tower after the 11:40 a.m. Tuesday shooting in the Bryant Square shopping area. Chu said Elder was listed Wednesday in critical condition.

Edmond Police Officer Jason Rigsby was eating lunch Tuesday at Freddy’s Frozen Custard, 1925 E. Second St., with a fellow officer when he heard Police Sgt. Anthony Fike and Officer Todd Strader on the radio talking about a gun, according to a police report released Wednesday.

Rigsby ran out of the restaurant to assist the officers across the street in the Bryant Square shopping area at Second Street and Bryant Avenue, police said.

When he arrived, he saw Fike posted up behind a pillar located just east of the Los Arcos Mexican Restaurant, and a white male lying on the ground with a bullet wound to his abdomen area, police said.

Rigsby asked Fike if the suspect still had a weapon and Fike said he had already seized it, police said.

Rigsby interviewed witnesses, one of whom was eating in the restaurant when one of her friends said “look police,” the report states. As the witness was turning around she saw an officer with his gun drawn, police said. She heard the officer talking to someone, but could not discern the words. A moment later she heard a pop, police said.

Another witness in the restaurant was sitting close to the east exit door, police said. He saw an officer pull up by the restaurant and draw his gun. He heard a loud pop, looked out the window and saw the suspect standing, holding his side, police said.

In a supplemental report, Edmond Police Officer Rickey Ecker responded to the call.

“I remember that it was odd because the caller disconnected and dispatch said they could not get back in touch with the caller again,” Ecker stated in his report.

En route, Ecker heard Fike call out on the radio about a possible public drunk call in front of Los Arcos, police said. Fike said officers had been out on the person before, police said.

Fike then called out that the person had a gun, police said. He then called out, “Shots fired, start medical!” police said.

Strader walked over to Ecker and handed him what appeared to be a blue Colt 1911, but was in fact a plastic gun, police said. Ecker stated it looked so real that he thought it was real until he touched it to secure it, police said.

Ecker then asked the suspect if he called 911 and he stated “Yes,” according to the supplemental report. “I then asked him why he called 911 and he stated ‘Because I wanted to die!” Ecker stated in his report.

Chu said the suspect made the 911 call from his phone at his apartment. She said Elder is in Presbyterian Hospital and underwent surgery Tuesday. He was shot once in the stomach area.

Chu said Elder was arrested on a felony assault with a gun on a police officer complaint.

Fike has been an officer with the department for 28 years, Chu said. He is on routine paid administrative leave until the investigation is complete, she said.

Chu said the incident illustrates why it is so important for the public to attend an upcoming Edmond Community Suicide Prevention Summit. It is scheduled for 6-8 p.m. April 23 at the UCO Nigh Center Constitution Hall, at 100 N. University Drive.

“In Edmond so far this year, and we are only half way through March, six people have committed suicide and there have been 14 attempted suicides,” Chu said.

The summit is a way the community is coming together to hopefully help anyone dealing with any and all aspects of suicide, especially where to turn to for help, Chu said. | 341-2121, ext. 108