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St. Charles Co. Shooting Suspect Killed by Police

Michael Calhoun (@michaelcalhoun, mrcalhoun@cbs.com)
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61 year old Richard Heeter, who was shot by police after attacking SWAT officers

61 year old Richard Heeter, who was shot by police after attacking SWAT officers

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Updated 12:15 p.m.

ST. CHARLES, MO (KMOX)-The St. Charles County Sheriff’s Department says the man who was shot to death after shooting two deputies and stabbing a St. Louis County Police SWAT team member, had few run-ins with the law.

Lt. Dave Tiefenbrunn tells KMOX Richard Heeter had not been in the county jail since 1981, and that was for traffic violations.

The 61-year-old Heeter was shot after he stabbed a SWAT team member who was trying to arrest him for shooting the two deputies as they approached a home in the 23-hundred block of Circle Drive near O’Fallon early this morning.

Investigators say Heeter had gone there to collect some kind of debt. The wounded officers have all been released from hospitals.

Tiefenburnn says the wounded St. Charles County Deputies are a 28-year-old man, who has been on the force 7 years, and a 35-year-old man, who is an eight year law enforcement veteran and has been on the St. Charles County force for five years.

Our Earlier Story:

O’FALLON, Mo. (KMOX) – The man believed to have ambushed two St. Charles County deputies with an assault-style weapon was killed by officers early Wednesday.

Authorities had been searching for Richard Heeter, 61, of Wentzville for nearly four hours.

Officers cornered Heeter near the house where the deputies were shot and urged him to surrender. Instead, with a hidden hand holding a knife, he lunged forward and stabbed a St. Louis County SWAT officer.

The other officers opened fire and killed him.

“They really didn’t have a chance,” St. Charles County Sheriff Thomas Neer said. “They approached as they’re trained, from a distance. The subject didn’t give them any opportunity at all to take any kind of cover.”

Neer said that the SWAT officer and the two deputies should be fine.

“Both officers are doing well,” he said. “They’re not life-threatening situations and all injuries were to the extremities, except for the glass in the face of the officer in the car.”

One of the deputies was shot in the arm while walking toward the house, in the 2300 block of Circle Dr. near O’Fallon Mo. about 1 a.m. The second was shot while still sitting in his police cruiser.

KMOX’s Michael Calhoun saw them being loaded into ambulances.

Police departments from across the region, from Webster Groves to Wentzville, were on the scene. A helicopter circled above. The St. Charles County bomb squad and SWAT and the St. Louis County tactical operations unit assisted.

Several streets around Sommers Dr and Hwy N were closed and homes were evacuated for a time.

St. Charles County sheriff’s Lt. David Tiefenbrunn said the unemployed Heeter had gone to the home to collect an unspecified debt. Neighbors later reported hearing gunfire and screaming, though no one at that home was injured.

This is a breaking story. Check back later with KMOX.com and NewsRadio 1120 KMOX for the latest information.

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