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Sheridan standoff continues as Wyoming mourns fallen officer

(Sheridan Police Department)

GILLETTE, Wyo. — Campbell County authorities, including Gillette police, remain locked in a standoff with an armed man in Sheridan alongside federal, state and multiple county law enforcement agencies. 

The man — who has been identified as 46-year-old William Lowery — is believed to be the suspect responsible for fatally shooting Sheridan Police Sgt. Nevada Krinkee while the officer was attempting to serve a trespass notice in the area of 5th Street and Val Vista Street on Feb. 13, according to the City of Sheridan. 

Following the shooting, Lowery fled the scene and was located a short time later in the area of 6th Street and North Sheridan Avenue, where he had barricaded himself inside a residence. Sheridan authorities evacuated nearby residents and requested aid from multiple Wyoming agencies. 

The Gillette Police Department received the call for assistance at 11:47 a.m. and dispatched its tactical unit. According to Gillette Deputy Police Chief Brent Wasson, the department sent 20 officers, nearly all of whom remain on the scene.  

According to Sheriff Scott Matheny, the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office sent eight deputies after receiving the call around 11:11 a.m., and the standoff is currently ongoing with law enforcement officials searching for a way to safely resolve the situation. 

Authorities have utilized an armored vehicle to remove windows and a garage door to give Lowery fewer places to hide, Matheny told Gillette reporters on Feb. 14, making a point that his office is currently operating in a support role and the incident remains an outside case. 

The latest available information reveals additional agencies have responded to the scene, including Natrona County; the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation; the Wyoming Game and Fish Department; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Bureau of Land Management; the Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms Administration; and fire and emergency medical services. 

Wyoming DCI released a statement earlier today saying few details will be publicly released, though a full report will be completed and provided to the Sheridan County Attorney’s Office once the incident has concluded. 

“Because this is an ongoing and open investigation, the names of the involved parties will not be released by DCI at this time,” the division said in a Feb. 14 statement. “We do not anticipate releasing additional information until the investigation is complete and a prosecutorial decision has been made.”

Fallen officer

More than 24 hours have passed since Krinkee — a six-and-a-half-year veteran of the Sheridan Police Department — was shot and killed, and Wyoming continues to mourn the loss of one of its law enforcment officers. 

“We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Police Sgt. Nevada Krinkee, who was killed in the line of duty while selflessly serving our community,” Sheridan Mayor Rich Bridger said in a statement following the incident. “His loss serves as a solemn and heartbreaking reminder of the risks our law enforcement officers face every day. Our thoughts and prayers are with Sgt. Krinkee’s family, loved ones, the Sheridan Police Department, and other first responders during this difficult time.”

Sen. Cynthia Lummis said her heart breaks for Krinkee’s family and loved ones, offering her prayers alongside all of those mourning the tragic and senseless loss and with the Sheridan Police Department as it works to bring the suspect into custody. 

“Wyoming law enforcement put their lives on the line every day to protect our communities, and this is the solemn reminder of the dangers they face serving the Cowboy State,” Lummis said in a statement. 

Additional words of support came from Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon, whose office ordered that the U.S. and Wyoming flags be lowered at the Capitol and Sheridan in honor of Krinkee. 

“I join all of Wyoming in mourning the loss of Sheridan Police Sgt. Nevada Krinkee. This senseless killing is a solemn reminder of the selfless risks out law enforcement officer take each day when they put on the badge,” Gordon said in a statement. “Jeanie and I extend our deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of Sgt. Krinkee, the Sheridan Police Department, and the entire law enforcement community.” 

Matheny also offered words of support to Krinkee’s family and the community of Sheridan in light of the officer’s death. 

“We offer our sincerest condolences to the family; every officer’s life is valuable and it hurts when it happens right here in our home state,” Matheny said. 

The City of Gillette posted on its social media page that its hearts are with Krinkee and the Sheridan Police Department. 

The City of Sheridan expressed gratitude for the outpouring of support — from its community as well as state and outside law enforcement agencies who responded in their time of need – on its social media page on Feb. 14. 

“We want to thank everyone for their heartfelt thoughts, prayers, and condolences,” the City of Sheridan posted. “The city is extremely grateful to the cities of Gillette and Casper for their immediate response in sending officers to augment our force and provide physical and moral support to our first responders.”

The City of Sheridan said it has never been more clear that when the chips are down in Wyoming, so many are available to step up to the plate. 

“As of 9 a.m. this morning, the situation is unresolved, but we have the right people managing the scene,” the City of Sheridan wrote. 

According to a peace officer memorial page, Krinkee is the 62nd Wyoming law enforcement officer to be killed in the line of duty. 

He leaves behind his wife, Sheridan Police Cpl. Karla Krinkee, and their infant daughter, the Sheridan Press reports.

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