WEED, Calif. – The Siskiyou County District Attorney’s Office is investigating an attack against a police officer that ended in the fatal shooting of a suspect. Investigators say Steven Hughes Henning of Whitefish, Montana was the man who ultimately died in the shooting in Weed. He was 32 years old.
Weed police responded to a small arson fire at the Greyhound Bus Depot around 8:00 Thursday night. According to District Attorney Kirk Andrus, the offer asked Henning who started the fire to put it out but he got enraged and attacked. The officer even used his Taser on Henning, but to no effect.
“He had incapacitated him for just a very short amount of time, maybe five seconds,” said Andrus. “And that is extremely unusual.”
After getting up, Henning reportedly tried to steal the police car. When the officer fought him out of the driver’s seat, he stole the officer’s Taser that had been dropped in the scuffle and ran away on foot into the nearby woods. He then escaped police for an hour and a half.
“They ended up setting up a perimeter around where he was, and then two officers came in to make that contact, sending a dog in as well,” said Andrus. “And again, he reacted with violence. It was just a short time after that he ended up getting shot.”
The District Attorney’s office says the suspect is not well known to law enforcement. An autopsy Friday will reveal whether drugs were involved.
The DA’s office is also looking into whether the use of force was justified. That investigation is expected to take weeks or months.