Suspect in killing of Idaho sheriff’s deputy fatally shot by police, authorities say

Apr 21, 2024, 1:15 PM

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — An Idaho sheriff’s deputy died after being shot by a driver during a traffic stop, and a man believed to be the shooting suspect was later fatally shot by police, authorities said Sunday.

Deputy Tobin Bolter was shot as he approached the driver’s window at about 9 p.m. Saturday in Boise, and the suspect took off, Ada County Sheriff Matt Clifford said Sunday. Bolter was the first sheriff’s deputy in the county to be killed in the line of duty, Clifford said.

Boise police found the shooting suspect’s vehicle unoccupied about a half hour after the shooting, and found a man believed to be the suspect outside a home, Boise Police Chief Ron Winegar said.

The police’s tactical unit responded and tried for some time to get the man to surrender, Winegar said. Some nearby residents were told to evacuate but others in the area were warned to stay inside, he said.

Shortly after midnight the man fired at officers, and one officer returned fire and shot him, Winegar said. The officers gave him aid but he was pronounced dead after being taken to a hospital, he said.

The man’s name has not been released but authorities said he was 65 years old and wanted for arrest for a misdemeanor.

A person who saw Bolter get shot stopped to help him before an ambulance arrived, Clifford said. Another deputy on the way to the scene was involved in a crash with another vehicle, and both the deputy and the other driver were taken to the hospital, Clifford said. The deputy was in stable condition Sunday but the condition of the other person has not been released.

At an emotional press conference shortly after Bolter passed away at the hospital, Clifford thanked the paramedics and the citizen who stopped to help the deputy.

“I think it goes to show what kind of community we live in where there are evil people that will do evil things but there are good people that help us and come to our aid,” he said.

Bolter had worked in law enforcement for seven years but had only joined the sheriff’s office in January, Clifford said. Before that he worked for the Meridian Police Department as well as California’s Pleasant Hill Police Department.

Idaho Gov. Brad Little ordered United States and Idaho flags to be lowered to half-staff in honor of Bolter.

“Our hearts break for the family, loved ones, and law enforcement colleagues of Deputy Tobin Bolter,” Little said in a statement. “Day in and day out, our brave men and women in blue put themselves in harm’s way to protect us and keep our communities safe. Idaho is grieving this devastating loss.”

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