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Hamilton Chief: Teen in police shootout wanted to die
HAMILTON, Ohio (Larry Davis) -- We are learning more today about the situation surrounding a shootout that left a Hamilton police officer injured and the suspect dead. Hamilton police officer Chad Stafford shot and killed Brandon Keeler last saturday morning.
Police say Keeler fired first, the bullet grazed Officer Stafford's head. Hamilton police chief Scott Scrimizzi says the 18-year-old Keeler was heavily armed and his goal was to die in a gun battle with police.
When Officer Stafford responded to 11th and Sipple, Chief Scrimizzi says Keeler had already fired several rounds into the neighborhood before officer got there. "Officer Stafford took cover behind a parked vehicle as the suspect began firing several shots. One of the rounds struck the officer in top of his head. The officer was shot, bleeding and clearly outgunned, yet he moved from behind his cover, fired two rounds from his duty pistol at distance of 68 feet, striking the suspect both times. He stopped the threat and did an outstanding job."
Hamilton police showed some of Keeler's arsenal. It included the AK 47 he fired, a Glock 10 mm handgun, three magazines and 200 rounds of ammunition. Chief Scrimizzi says Keeler was fascinated with guns, involved in drugs and had mental health issues. He left note saying officers would have to pry his gun from his hand. Police say he was also fascinated with the video game Grand Theft Auto.
Officer Stafford is on paid leave. Officials with the AFT are trying to figure out how Keeler got the guns. At 18, it's illegal for him to buy anything but a rifle.