CENTRAL POINT, Ore. — The Jackson County Sheriff's Office has released more information about an officer-involved shooting in Central Point on Wednesday night, including of the identity of the man who died.
According to the Sheriff's Office, dispatch received a 911 call around 8:15 p.m., when a woman reported that a man was threatening her boyfriend on a property in the 8000-block of Blackwell Road. She said that she heard gunshots coming from a shop on the property.
Deputies arrived minutes later and began working to secure the scene. They found one man who cooperated with them and exited the shop, but a second man was reportedly still inside — "likely armed and hostile," the Sheriff's Office said.
The second man was later identified as 29-year-old Teddy James Maverick Varner. Sheriff Nathan Sickler also clarified that the first man was the boyfriend of the caller and a friend of Varner's.
"As they continued to speak with the witness/victim, Varner exited the building with a handgun and approached the deputies in an aggressive manner, pointing the gun at them," the Sheriff's Office said.
One of the deputies opened fire with his patrol rifle, taking multiple shots and hitting Varner.
Just a few minutes after deputies arrived, they requested an ambulance to take Varner to the hospital. He was later pronounced dead, and the Sheriff's Office said that his next-of-kin have been notified.
An autopsy conducted on Thursday found that Varner suffered two gunshot wounds from the deputy's fire. Sheriff Sickler said that alcohol likely contributed to the incident, but that will not be confirmed until a toxicology report is returned.
The Major Assault and Death Investigations Unit (MADIU) has since taken over the investigation under the direction of the District Attorney's Office. Oregon State Police will be leading the investigation, which is still ongoing. Once the investigation is finished, all of the details will be submitted to the District Attorney’s Office for review.
The deputy who shot Varner was placed on paid administrative leave — standard protocol for an officer-involved shooting. The Sheriff's Office said that the deputy's name will not be released at this time.
"These incidents are difficult for all involved and we ask for all to be respectful of the decedent, the family, and your law enforcement," the Sheriff's Office said.