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Suspect in Kan. Sheriff’s Death Surrenders

April 9, 2005

NEWTON, Kan. (AP) _ A man suspected of fatally shooting a Kansas sheriff’s deputy and critically injuring another officer barricaded himself inside his home for hours before surrendering to authorities Saturday.

Kansas Bureau of Investigation spokesman Kyle Smith said Gregory Moore, 46, is suspected of shooting the officers when they barged into his house after hearing a woman being struck.

Harvey County sheriff’s deputy Kurt Ford, 38, was killed, and Hesston police Detective Chris Eilert, 33, was shot four times but survived and was in stable condition at a hospital.

Smith said the officers went to the home after a 14-year-old girl called police at 12:50 a.m. Saturday to say her mother was being beaten by a man who lived with them and that the suspect had a gun.

Around 3 a.m., law enforcement reached Moore and the woman by telephone, and Moore agreed to talk to the officers at the door. But when the woman indicated she wanted to leave, the door slammed shut and officers heard her being hit, authorities said.

The two officers rushed into the house and were met by gunfire. The hostage _ whom authorities described only as living at the residence in a romantic relationship with the suspect _ broke free from Moore and escape unharmed.

Smith said Moore, who was not hurt, remained barricaded in the house for hours before surrendering about 8:30 a.m. Officers found a handgun and shotgun in the home.

Moore’s friend Bill Shinkle said Moore was on living on workers compensation after an injury at the farm implement dealership where he worked and had been struggling as a single father of two teenage girls since his wife died five years ago.

``We need to learn to pray for all the families involved in this situation,″ Shinkle said.

Ford had just returned to the Harvey County Sheriff’s Department in January.

``He was always the first one through the door. He was that kind of guy,″ Smith said.

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