Ok­la­homa’s man­hunt ends with mur­der sus­pect dead

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

A mas­sive, week­long man­hunt for a sus­pect in a string of vi­o­lent crimes, in­clud­ing the killing of two rel­a­tives, the shoot­ing of three law en­force­ment of­fi­cers and mul­ti­ple car­jack­ings, has ended in a po­lice chase and shootout that left the man dead in western Ok­la­homa. Au­thor­i­ties be­lieve Michael Dale Vance Jr posted two Face­book Live videos Oct 24 doc­u­ment­ing his run from po­lice, although he had been silent since then.

An Ok­la­homa state trooper shot and killed Vance late Sun­day near Leedey, 130 miles north­west of Ok­la­homa City and 45 miles north of where he was last seen a week ear­lier. Ear­lier Sun­day, Vance shot and wounded a Dewey County of­fi­cer and fled in a car, ac­cord­ing to Dave Turk, spokesman for the US Mar­shals Ser­vice in Wash­ing­ton, DC, which par­tic­i­pated in the man­hunt.

Of­fi­cers pur­sued Vance for about half an hour when he was ap­proached by an Ok­la­homa state trooper. “There was an ex­change of gun­fire be­tween the state trooper and the sub­ject, and the sub­ject was killed,” Turk said. Ok­la­homa High­way Pa­trol Chief Ricky Adams de­scribed the shootout as “pretty dra­matic.” “We pinned him down,” Adams told The Ok­la­homan news­pa­per. “He’s dead ... It was an ex­tremely good job of po­lice work by ev­ery agency in­volved.” Vance was wanted on mul­ti­ple charges, in­clud­ing two counts of first­de­gree mur­der. The hunt be­gan af­ter he shot and wounded two po­lice of­fi­cers on Oct. 23 in Well­ston, 35 miles north­east of Ok­la­homa City, au­thor­i­ties said.

Vance, 38, was sus­pected of shoot­ing a wo­man and steal­ing her ve­hi­cle at a mo­bile home park near Well­ston, then driv­ing about 8 miles to his rel­a­tives’ mo­bile home in Luther and killing them. Ron­ald Everett Wilk­son, 55, had been shot and had stab wounds to his neck “con­sis­tent with an at­tempt to sever his head,” an ar­rest af­fi­davit said.

Va­lerie Kay Wilk­son, 54, had sim­i­lar neck wounds along with de­fen­sive wounds on her arms, the af­fi­davit stated. Just days later, Ok­la­homa County Sher­iff John Whet­sel in­di­cated to the AP that au­thor­i­ties were at a loss as to where Vance might be, say­ing he “could be any­where from Cal­i­for­nia to Mex­ico to Florida.”— AP

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