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Officers in Sunday’s fatal shooting ID’d

The police officers involved in the fatal shooting of a domestic violence suspect Sunday were identified Friday as Sgt. Dave Overhoff and Officer Chris McMurtrey.

McMurtrey, 31, has been with the Spokane Police Department for two years; Overhoff, 48, is an 18-year veteran.

Investigators have not said who fired the shots that killed Kenneth R. Dennis, who police say was shot after he “almost stabbed one of the officers,” according to a search warrant filed in Spokane County District Court.

That officer was interviewed Friday morning, said Trooper Troy Briggs, spokesman for the Washington State Patrol, which is leading the multi-agency investigation.

“It’ll probably be Monday until we release (his name),” Briggs said.

Dennis’ family said the officers burst into the home and did not identify themselves.

Read my full story here.

Police: Man shot ‘almost stabbed’ officer

Spokane police say Kenneth R. Dennis was shot after he “almost stabbed one of the officers,” according to a newly filed search warrant.

Investigators believe a physical altercation occurred between Dennis and his girlfriend, Crystal A. Barrett, 24, before police arrived at 5726 N. Elgin St., Trooper Troy Briggs said in a news release Thursday.

According to the warrant, Cassandra L. Shear, Barrett’s friend, called police to say that Barrett “was locked inside the house and was being pushed by her intoxicated boyfriend.” Shear called again to say she wasn’t being allowed in the home.

A 13-inch knife was found near Dennis’ body, WSP said. Shell casings from the two officers also were recovered.

Dennis' family said the officers burst into the home and did not identify themselves. They have declined interviews.

The officers, identified only as a 48-year-old sergeant with 18 years of experience and a 31-year-old officer with two years of experience, who have not been publicly identified, have not yet been interviewed, said Briggs, spokesman for the multi-agency investigative team.

“They did a tactical debriefing, but the complete interviews of the officers will come at a later date,” he said.
Meanwhile, a donation account has been created at Wells Fargo to raise money for Kenneth Dennis’ burial. Donations can be made at any Wells Fargo branch under the account “Kenneth Dennis.”

Autopsy identifies man shot by police

The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office identified the man killed in Sunday's police shooting as Kenneth R. Dennis after an autopsy Tuesday. He died of gunshot wounds, but the medical examiner would not release how many.

Dennis, 26, became the fifth person killed by law enforcement in Spokane County since August after police said he armed himself with a knife during a domestic violence investigation early Sunday.

The names of the two Spokane police officers involved have not been released, but one has been identified as a 48-year-old sergeant with 18 years of experience and the other as a 31-year-old officer with two years of experience.

According to a news release, Spokane police officers were dispatched at 3:52 a.m. to 5726 N. Elgin St. for a report of domestic violence. An officer arrived on the scene at 3:57 a.m. At 3:59 a.m., a second officer arrived. Shots were fired three minutes later, at 4:02 a.m. At 4:08 a.m. the Spokane Fire Department arrived, followed by an ambulance at 4:13 a.m.

Investigators say they found a large knife near Dennis.

A multiagency team comprised of officers from the Washington State Patrol, the Spokane Police Department and the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the shooting.

Sunday’s is the seventh in which law enforcement officers have shot Spokane County residents since Aug. 25, when a sheriff’s deputy killed a Spokane Valley pastor.

Five of the shootings have been fatal. Spokane Police Department was involved in three fatal shootings last year, including a March incident on the South Hill. The Spokane County Sheriff's Office was involved in two, with the last two shootings having occurred in 2006. SPD had one in 2007 and two in 2009, but neither agency was involved in a fatal shooting in 2008.

If anyone would like to talk to The Spokesman-Review about Dennis, please call (509) 459-5534.