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Coeur d’Alene police tight-lipped about 18-year-old’s medical condition after officer-involved shooting

UPDATED: Mon., July 8, 2019

Folks enjoy the beautiful weather at Independence Point in Coeur d’Alene on Friday, July 5, 2019. Shots rang out there last night during the annual Fourth of July fireworks show. Officers fired at suspected shooter Tyler Rambo, sending him to the hospital in critical condition. Kathy Plonka/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Folks enjoy the beautiful weather at Independence Point in Coeur d’Alene on Friday, July 5, 2019. Shots rang out there last night during the annual Fourth of July fireworks show. Officers fired at suspected shooter Tyler Rambo, sending him to the hospital in critical condition. Kathy Plonka/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

Police officials on Monday refused to disclose the medical condition of Tyler Rambo, the 18-year-old who was shot by Coeur d’Alene officers after allegedly firing a gun in a crowd at a Fourth of July fireworks display.

The day after the shooting, Coeur d’Alene police Chief Lee White said Rambo was struck at least 10 times, and he was listed in critical condition at Kootenai Health.

On Monday, police Capt. Dave Hagar said in an email: “We don’t have his current medical condition, and it would not be appropriate for us to release if we did have it. I have been in communication with the Idaho State Police, and they are not releasing any information about his status either.”

Hagar did not respond to a followup email seeking verification that Rambo was alive.

Reached by phone later, Sgt. Jared Reneau reiterated that the department couldn’t share health information but said he had heard no indication that Rambo had died.

The Idaho State Police is investigating the police shooting, but on Monday an ISP official said all media inquiries about Rambo should be directed to the Coeur d’Alene Police Department.

Andrea Nagel, a spokeswoman for Kootenai Health, said: “We’re not able to confirm that he’s with us or what condition he’s in.”

In general, Nagel said, the hospital can’t acknowledge a patient’s status if doing so would put the person in danger, or if the patient or a relative requests confidentiality, among other reasons. She wouldn’t say if law enforcement sought to block disclosure of Rambo’s condition.

Rambo had not been formally charged as of Monday.

The first shots were fired near portable restrooms between the Coeur d’Alene Resort and Independence Point. Officers chased and shot Rambo near the basketball courts in Coeur d’Alene City Park.

White, the police chief, said Rambo was holding a .357-caliber revolver when officers shot him; investigators also found two spent .357 casings at the scene.

White said police were searching for someone who may have been shot in the leg before officers chased and shot Rambo. Police presume that person left the scene on their own.

Seven officers involved in the chase were placed on administrative leave.

On social media Monday, Coeur d’Alene police said anyone who witnessed the shootings should contact investigators at (208) 769-2320, (208) 769-2296 or policetips@cdaid.org.

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