UPDATE: Names of FPD officers involved in fatal shooting released
The names of four Fairbanks Police officers who fatally shot an armed suspect on Tuesday have been released.
According to FPD, Lt. Ron Dupee and Officers Dennis Benn, Lane Bonham, and Tyler Larimer fired their weapons in Tuesday's shooting, which killed 28-year-old Garrett James.
Dupee, Benn and Larimer were involved in another fatal shooting in May, 2017 that
Bonham was involved in the
along with three other FPD officers.
Larimer was involved in the
Dupee was also involved in the Sept. 2015 fatal shooting of 19-year-old Tristan Vent near Davis Road in Fairbanks. Vent was stopped after being spotted driving a stolen vehicle, and confronted officers with a weapon. In that incident, Dupee fired "Super Sock" bean bags in an attempt to stop Vent with less-lethal force.
The four officers involved in this week's shooting have been placed on paid administrative leave for a minimum of three working days.
Four Fairbanks police officers fatally shot a suspect who reportedly brandished a gun at officers who were responding to reports of an armed robbery of a retail store, a carjacking at gunpoint, and a car chase in whiteout conditions.
According to a release from Fairbanks Police Department late Tuesday night, the investigation leading up to the shooting began on Saturday night, when FPD officers received reports of a gun theft at a Fairbanks-area Walmart.
Investigators say that shortly after 8 p.m. Saturday, a suspect asked to see a .45 caliber gun, and when it was in his possession, the man fled the store with it before attempting to carjack a driver at gunpoint. The stolen gun however did not have a firing pin and had a trigger lock on it. The driver refused to give up their vehicle and the man fled the scene.
Officers looked but were unable to find the suspect that night, but FPD detectives were able to identify the suspect and secure a warrant for his arrest Tuesday morning.
Minutes after 3 p.m., Tuesday, FPD received reports of an armed carjacking at 19 College Road. Police interviewed the victim, who said a suspect took her vehicle at gunpoint and drove away.
At 3:33 p.m., police were alerted to an armed robbery at 29 College Road, where a suspect smashed a display case containing guns and stole the contents before fleeing the scene. The description of the suspect matched that of the carjacking suspect.
At 3:38 p.m., the stolen vehicle was spotted traveling northbound on the Steese Highway by an FPD detective, who, along with other officers, pursued the vehicle to the Hilltop Truck Stop on the Elliott Highway in whiteout conditions.
The suspect reportedly turned around and began traveling back into Fairbanks, at which time FPD and Alaska State Troopers closed northbound traffic on the Elliott Highway and deployed spike strips to stop the vehicle.
At 3:51 p.m., FPD request an ambulance be staged at the Fox weigh station due to deteriorating road conditions.
Four minutes later, the suspect vehicle left the road at mile 3 of the Elliott Highway to avoid a collision with a semi-truck stopped in the road.
According to FPD, the suspect then got out of the car and "came towards the officers with a handgun and pointed it at them" at which time four FPD officers opened fire.
FPD says officers on the scene provided first aid until an ambulance arrived, but the suspect, identified as 28-year-old Garrett James Ebenal, died at the scene. According to the department, Ebenal was a convicted felon with an active no bail probation warrant.
Ebenal's family has been notified.
FPD says a handgun recovered at the scene was the same gun stolen from Walmart on Saturday. Its trigger lock had been removed and the gun had been loaded.
The four officers involved in the shooting have been placed on paid administrative leave for a minimum of three working days, and their names will be released after 72 hours according to department protocol.
The AST Bureau of Investigation was called by FPD to assist with the investigation.
The Elliott Highway has been reopened as of 7:15 p.m.
Alaska State Troopers have closed traffic in both directions on the Elliott Highway near the Fox weigh station while Fairbanks Police and AST investigate an officer involved shooting.
FPD spokesperson Yumi McCulloch said in a release that the Fairbanks Police Department was involved in a shooting.
The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
that an FPD officer shot one person, and that traffic is closed between the Fox weigh station and the Hilltop Restaurant. The condition of the person who was shot and the events leading up to the shooting have not been released.
AST says the Elliott Highway will be closed in both directions until further notice.