LINCOLN–(KFOR May 2)–In an update provided to KFOR News and other media on Tuesday morning, Lancaster County Sheriff Terry Wagner said a man from Nevada with Lincoln ties had pointed a gun and fired one shot toward two officers, who returned fire on Monday afternoon near NW 27th and West “O” Street.
Wagner said 35-year-0ld Chase Abney was critically wounded by gunfire from one Nebraska State Patrol trooper and one Lincoln Police officer, after Abney had allegedly pointed a 9mm handgun and fire it. Wagner also indicated that Abney had been living in New York and had warrants out for his arrest in New York, Arizona and California. Abney had been in Lincoln at least a week for a family function.
Sheriff Wagner said through their investigation, Abney was not the target of a drug investigation that was underway with members of the Narcotics Task Force outside the Super 8 motel just west of Highway 77 and West “O” Street. The State Patrol investigator and the one from LPD had moved across the street to the north in a vehicle. Abney was in a vehicle with New York license plates had followed the two task force members to the parking lot in the 100 block of NW 28th Street.
The two officers got out of their vehicle and contacted Abney and gave him loud and verbal commands to get out. Abney, who is 6-4 and 240 pounds, resisted and refused to comply before he pulled out the gun and fired it.
“One trooper and the LPD officer returned fire, striking Abney,” Sheriff Wagner said.
First aid was used until paramedics took Abney to a Lincoln hospital with gunshot wounds in critical condition. The gun Abney used was reported stolen Monday in Norfolk. He also had outstanding warrants for disorderly conduct with a firearm and drug warrants out of New York and California, plus three domestic violence protection order violations out of New York.
Based on the preliminary investigation for the officers firing their guns, it appears “they were justified in their actions,” Wagner said.
In Abney’s vehicle, investigators found meth, marijuana and a marijuana pipe inside his vehicle. As for the identification of the officers involved in the shooting, Lincoln Police Chief Teresa Ewins says they have to be very careful.
“As we go into the investigation, we learn more about the individual whether there’s additional connections–gangs, things like that,” Ewins said. “We do an assessment to see whether or not if there’s a threat toward the officers or their families.”
Nebraska State Patrol Superintendent Col. John Bolduc said they simply don’t give out the names of troopers from officer-involved shootings.
“We never have and that policy is not likely to change anytime soon,” Bolduc said.
Wagner says Abney was staying at the Super 8 in a different room than the one under surveillance. Members of the Narcotics Task Force had been monitoring 25-year-old Dylan Johnson of Lincoln and saw him in the parking lot getting rid of multiple bags of marijuana on the ground. A short time after the shooting, plainclothes officers arrested Johnson and put him in jail.
LPD Captain Ryan Dale said a search warrant in Johnson’s motel room recovered a full-pound of meth, half-pound of marijuana and five grams of cocaine, plus an AR style rifle. Johnson was soon taken into custody where he faces four felony counts.