Business caught in crossfire in deputy shooting

Zernco

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BUTLER COUNTY, Kansas – A local business becomes part of a crime scene investigation after a shooting leaves a Butler County Sheriff’s deputy hurt, and the suspect still on the run.

Around 25 employees at Zernco had Labor Day off when investigators blocked off their parking lot after the shooting. It happened early Monday near Santa Fe Lake Road and Highway 54.

“It hit right by our front door where we walk in and out everyday,” said Scott Marko, Zernco employee.

The business was hit with a stray bullet when gunshots were exchanged between the deputy and the suspect.

Investigators put more than 10 black circle marks on the steps of the front door.

They represent the bullet fragments.

“They got that all marked off and they found a blood trail over here so they had their dogs sniffing out and trying to follow the suspect. I guess he went to the back our building off into the woods,” said Marko.

Officers have been searching for 41-year-old Jan Tracy Kilbourne with no luck.

The sheriff’s office says they’re chasing several new leads and now have reason to believe he may be headed southwest.

“I’m thinking that he’s going to try to get back to Liberal. I really am. That’s where his ties are and that’s what an ex-wife told us,” said Sheriff Kelly Herzet.

The sheriff called off the massive search Tuesday leaving businesses hoping for a capture soon.

“They shut down the highway here so there wasn’t anybody getting in and out. Luckily, we weren’t here yesterday. It was kind of scary thinking about that,” said Marko.

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