OPD Officer Kerrie Orozco, Suspect Killed In Shootout

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An Omaha police officer and a suspect were shot and killed after a confrontation at North 30th Street and Martin Avenue just before 1 p.m. Wednesday.

The officer is identified as Kerrie Orozco.

The suspect is identified as Marcus Wheeler, 26.

Marcus Wheeler

Witnesses reported hearing about 15 gunshots in two bursts and seeing CPR performed on the officer. Officer Orozco was taken to CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center. Another ambulance carried Wheeler to the same facility. Both later died.

Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer arrived at the scene, then left after about 15 minutes, believed to be en route to the hospital.

Sources tell WOWT 6 News Officer Orozco was a task force member. She was a wife and mother.

Chief Schmaderer said Wednesday evening, "This is a somber day for the city of Omaha," and then announced that, "Kerrie Orozco has died after being shot in the line of duty."

The chief said that Officer Orozco had been with the department for approximately seven-and-a-half years. She worked in the gang unit, a job she held since 2012. She had a husband, Hector, an 8-year-old stepdaughter, Natalia and a stepson Santiago, who is 6-years-old. She was also the mother of a newborn baby who arrived February 17th. Olivia Ruth has been in hospital care since her birth and is set to be released on Thursday.

Deputy Chief Dave Baker said earlier that officers from the OPD Fugitive Task Force were serving a felony arrest warrant near Martin Avenue and Read Street.

"As a result of that shots were fired and an officer was tranferred to CHI Creighton, Code 99 (CPR in progress)," Baker said. The suspect was also critically injured.

Shooting Scene Map

Tiffany Atkins is a neighbor who told us, "I heard shots fired and when I heard shots fired, I ran down inside to my basement."

One witness told us that the house where some of the investigation has been focused is his house and that the suspect had run into his backyard. "I just ran outside tried to get the guy help," he said. "He just fell over, his eyes went open and rolled back."

Marty Bilek, Mayor Jean Stothert's chief of staff, said, "It's very bad."

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts sent a Tweet saying, " Susanne and I send our thoughts and prayers to the police officer in critical condition in Omaha."

Approximately a dozen officers accompanied the two rescue squads to the hospital. Entrances were blocked off by police. Hospital officials said the facility was not on lockdown.

Police Search
Between 2:30 and 3 p.m. we noticed a strong police presence searching along Vane Street. Crime tape went up, then the crime scene was expanded. Officers were searching that neighborhood, moving media crews back, as they looked for evidence.

Around 3 p.m. a deputy told WOWT 6 News that people inside the crime scene were being allowed to leave, but were told not to return. The investigation is expected to continue for some time.

A makeshift memorial for Officer Orozco has been started outside Omaha Police Headquarters at South 15th and Howard streets.




Related Audio
Officer Down Audio: Courtesy Mean Streets