Oregon State Police Chief placed on leave after shooting during Amber Alert incident

Superintendent Casey Codding, the leader of the Oregon State Police, has been placed on administrative leave along with two other troopers. This action was taken after Codding discharged his service weapon during a high-speed chase on Interstate 5 near Eugene on Tuesday.

Codding was one of the troopers who responded to the call when police in Oregon discovered that a former Washington state police and school resource officer had allegedly abducted his 1-year-old son and murdered a woman and a teenage girl, which included the child’s mother, in West Richland, Washington.

On Tuesday afternoon, the suspect, Elias Huizar, was spotted by Oregon State Police after he tried to evade a traffic stop. Tragically, Huizar later took his own life with a gunshot wound.

According to Capt. Kyle Kennedy from the Oregon State Police, Codding was present in the vicinity when the pursuit was taking place.

Kennedy explained that he couldn’t provide a specific reason for why the superintendent happened to be in that particular location at that moment. However, he emphasized that the superintendent was present and ready to assist.

Using lethal force in the line of duty is not something commonly associated with high-ranking law enforcement officers. Their role typically involves administrative duties for a large statewide agency.

Josh Brooks, the Deputy Superintendent of the Oregon State Police, will temporarily assume the responsibilities in the absence of Codding.

The duration of Codding and the other troopers’ administrative leave remains uncertain, according to Kennedy.

According to Kennedy, the entire law enforcement organization was dedicated to locating Huizar after the Washington State Patrol asked for an Amber Alert to be issued.

During the pursuit, Codding, who was behind the wheel of his unmarked State Police SUV, was actively involved in chasing the suspect, with speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour.

Sgt. Orly Johnson and another trooper, who is currently on leave, made an effort to apprehend Huizar near milepost 209.

According to Kennedy, the suspect vehicle lost control during the pursuit, leading the suspect to open fire on the officers.

Kennedy said that Codding and Johnson returned fire.

According to Kennedy, it is currently believed that the suspect did not get hit by gunfire during the incident. He stated that although some shots were fired, the pursuit carried on without any further impact on the suspect.

Kennedy informed OPB that speeds once again exceeded 100 miles per hour.

During the pursuit, Kennedy mentioned that although there was an airplane available for assistance, it was not involved.

During a news conference on Tuesday, authorities revealed that Huizar died by suicide after crashing near milepost 197. Thankfully, one-year-old Roman Santos emerged from the incident unharmed.

“It’s not ideal for the superintendent to be involved in a situation like this. However, when he is one of the few people in the area, it is necessary for anyone available to respond and provide assistance,” Kennedy explained. “This called for everyone to come together and help out.”

Kennedy commended Codding for his actions and described him as “a trooper at heart.” He expressed gratitude on behalf of all the Oregon State Police members involved, emphasizing their relief that the child was unharmed.

Codding had been involved in a high-profile police killing before this week’s shooting.

On January 26, 2016, Codding took part in the shooting and subsequent death of LaVoy Finicum, who was one of the leaders of an armed occupation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

During his time with the Oregon State Police, Codding held the position of lieutenant, where he was responsible for overseeing the agency’s SWAT team for almost thirty years.

Reference Article


Avatar photo
MBS Staff
Articles: 6290

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *