A shooting and subsequent fire near Hauser Lake left one person dead and one injured late Monday night. Adam J. Bennett was arrested a short time after he allegedly fled the scene.
The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office received reports of a structure fire in the area of Hauser Lake Road and state Highway 53 at about 7:45 p.m. Monday.
When first responders arrived, they were advised there was a shooting with numerous victims, the sheriff’s office said in a news release.
The Kootenai County Coroner’s Office and detectives identified the man who died as Dennis Rogers, 77, of Hauser, and the injured person as John S. Hazell Jr., 55, of Hauser, according to a subsequent news release. Hazell is being treated for injuries that are not life-threatening. Rogers’ cause of death wasn’t immediately known.
Witnesses reported a man was seen running from the area, according to the sheriff’s office. Not long after, a deputy was flagged down and told about a man in a vehicle with a gun near Prairie Avenue and Pleasant View Road.
Deputies took Bennett, a 44-year-old transient, into custody without incident, they said. Bennett was booked into the Kootenai County jail for two active warrants, but additional charges are expected once detectives and the coroner complete the investigation.
Sherry Krauss, who lives across the road from where the incident occurred at 8964 Hauser Lake Road, said she heard three “big booms.” She said the noise did not sound like gunshots.
“I looked out the window upstairs there and (there was) just a big ball of fire, so that’s when I called 911,” Krauss said.
She said law enforcement arrived pretty quickly and SWAT personnel responded, too. It wasn’t until later that she learned there was a shooting as well as the fire.
Krauss said Hauser Lake Road was closed for hours. A helicopter roamed the skies with a light shining down on the area until 4 a.m. Tuesday, she said.
Krauss, who moved to her property from Spokane in 2016, said an elderly couple lived at the property where the incident occurred but she never met them.
While the area is rural, Krauss said deputies frequently respond to her road.
“It’s not quiet here at all,” she said.
The sheriff’s office is asking the public to call (208) 446-1300 if they have more information related to the shooting.
Emma Epperly contributed to this report.
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