Mo. officer intentionally struck by vehicle outside of station

Police say Officer Mark Priebe may not be able to walk again

Steve Pokin and Wyatt D. Wheeler
Springfield News-Leader

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A man was shot Tuesday morning after he allegedly struck a police officer with his vehicle in an apparent attempt to either run over the officer or to drive into the front of the police station.

Police said the officer was "crushed" between the suspect's SUV and bollards that are placed in front of the station to protect it from someone driving into the building.

Officer Mark Priebe was
Officer Mark Priebe was "crushed" between the suspect's SUV and bollards in front of the station. (Photo/SPD)

A bollard is a sturdy, short vertical post.

Police Chief Paul Williams said Officer Mark Priebe, a 21-year veteran of the Springfield Police Department, has been listed in serious condition. It is unclear if he will be able to walk again, a department official said.

The suspect was identified as 28-year-old Jon Tyler Franklin Routh, the release said. Williams said initially that he did not know his condition other than the fact that he was shot by a second police officer. 

Both the officer and the suspect were sent to the hospital to be treated for their injuries. 

Williams said the suspect entered the lobby of the police station, 321 E. Chestnut Expressway. That would have been about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.

"The man was creating a disturbance in the lobby of the police station," Williams said.

The suspect tried to enter a secure door that leads to a non-public part of the station, Williams said. The suspect "banged" on the door.

He left the lobby and urinated on the front of the building, Williams said.

The suspect left the immediate area of the police department but returned in an SUV, Williams said.

The officer who was later injured tried to flag him down to talk to him.

Instead, Williams said, the suspect accelerated his vehicle toward the officer, who could not get out of the way.

The officer was pinned between the vehicle and one of the bollards, Williams said.

A second officer told the suspect to exit the vehicle. The suspect did not, and the second officer shot the suspect, Williams said.

Several officers then moved the vehicle back to free the pinned officer.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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