WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – UPDATE: A spokesperson with the Los Angeles Police Department has confirmed that 25-year-old Tyler Barriss was arrested in connection with what Wichita police have described as a “swatting incident” that left 28-year-old Andrew Finch dead in front of his southwest Wichita home.
A Wichita police officer fatally shot a man in southwest Wichita Thursday night.
Deputy Chief Troy Livingston said WPD received a call reporting a shooting at 6:18 p.m. in the 1000 block of West McCormick. He said the caller stated a mother and son got into an argument and, during that, a father was shot in the head. Livingston said the caller said the father died and two hostages were being held.
When police arrived, a 28-year-old man came to the front door of the home. Livingston said a WPD officer fired his service weapon. The man was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead around 7 p.m. He has been identified by family as Andrew Thomas Finch.
Deputy Chief Troy Livingston said when police entered the home, they did not find a deceased man inside.
Wichita police said they conducted interviews with four witnesses who were inside the home at the time of the shooting along with several officers.
Deputy Chief Livingston said they are looking to see if the incident was possible swatting. Swatting is defined as a “the action or practice of making a prank call to emergency services in an attempt to bring about the dispatch of a large number of armed police officers to a particular address.” Swatting is more common among online gamers, although Finch said her son didn’t play video games.
During a press conference held this afternoon, police released both 911 audio and a short clip of the body camera footage, showing an officer firing one shot, killing Finch.
The 911 audio details the conversation the unknown suspect and dispatch had, during what was later determined to be a prank call.
“They were arguing and I shot him in the head and is not breathing,” said the suspect.
The conversation between the 911 dispatcher and the suspect continued for several minutes.
“I’m thinking about, because I already poured gasoline all over the house, I might just set it on fire,” said the suspect. “Okay, we don’t need to do that, okay,” added the dispatcher.
The 911 dispatcher also asked for the suspect’s address.
“Yeah, um, it’s 1033 West McCormick Street,” said the suspect.
Deputy Chief Livingston says the officers arrived at the address and got positioned for what they believed was a hostage situation.
At that time, Finch opened the front door.
“Officers gave several verbal commands to that male to put his hands up and walk towards them, the male complied for a very short time,” said Deputy Chief Livingston.
He says that’s when Finch lowered his hands, before raising them again.
“The male then turned towards officers on the east side of the residence, lowered his hands to the waist band again and suddenly pulled them back up, towards those officers to the east,” said Deputy Chief Livingston.
Fearing for the safety of nearby officers, Deputy Chief Livingston said an officer on the north side of the street fired the shot that killed Finch.
KSN asked Deputy Chief Livingston if Finch was armed.
“He was not armed,” said Deputy Chief Livingston.
Deputy Chief Livingston stressed it was the irresponsible actions of a prankster that ultimately put the lives of others at risk.
“Last evening’s officer-involved shooting is a tragic and senseless act,” said Deputy Chief Livingston.
KSN asked where this 911 call originated from.
It’s something Deputy Chief Livingston says they cannot release at this time. He says no arrests have been made in this case so far.
The officer who reportedly shot the victim was a seven-year veteran and will be put on administrative leave.
The full press conference can be found in the video below: