Olathe, Kansas - Fox 4 news is reporting that an Olathe police officer fired a warning shot at an armed man who was indiscriminately shooting his gun in a residential neighborhood.
We hope that this is a mistake on the reporter's part, because as we covered before, warning shots are almost always a horrible idea.
Olathe police department distributed the following press release. The press release contained no mention of warning shots other than an officer fired:
On April 8, 2017, at approximately 3:00 PM, Olathe Officers were dispatched to the 100 block of Pasadena Drive for an armed disturbance.
Officers located a male armed with a firearm. The male discharged multiple rounds randomly while walking in the neighborhood. An Olathe Officer discharged his department issued handgun at the suspect. No one was injured during the incident. The suspect was taken into custody.
This case remains under investigation by the Olathe Police Department. Anyone with information regarding this investigation is asked to call the Olathe Police Department at (913) 971-6950 or the TIPS Hotline at (816).474-8477.
We're glad that the suspect was taken into custody without anybody being hurt, but we are concerned that an officer may have fired a warning shot.
Warning shots threaten the lives of other people in the area. If lethal force is not justified, then a warning shot is an unnecessary risk. If lethal force is justified, then firing a warning shot is madness because it won't end the immediate threat to life.
It's not clear where the warning shot was fired, but in a residential neighborhood it would be hard to pick a safe target for a warning shot.
No further details surrounding the circumstances of the shooting have been released at this time.
It's not clear if warning shots are allowed by Olathe Police Department policy.