SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams says investigators are hoping the one surviving civilian of a deadly shooting on March 15, 2020, can help officers piece together what happened that night.
The gunman, who was identified as Joaquin Roman, crashed into the Kum & Go at 2885 E. Chestnut Expressway late that Sunday (March 15) night. Police say Roman entered the store, shot four people who were inside, then shot the two responding officers. Springfield Officer Chris Walsh was killed. Also killed were Troy Rapp, Shannon Perkins, and Matthew Hicks. Springfield officer Josiah Overton was shot and injured, along with another victim. Roman killed himself at the scene.
Chief Williams shared an update during a virtual Coffee With the Chief Facebook live on April 16, 2020. He said the victim who was shot was released from the hospital on April 15, 2020. Williams said officers are interviewing this survivor.
“We may never be able to figure out a motive for why someone did that, but that is ongoing, we’re still in the process of doing some interviews. I know there was one additional victim who was not killed, who was hospitalized, and he was released yesterday so we’re in the process of interviewing him now and seeing if he can shed some light on that,” Williams said.
Williams also said Officer Overton is recovering from his injuries at home, and is “chomping at the bit” to get back to work with his brothers and sisters at the department.
“We, I’ve said this a couple times in the past, we haven’t really had the opportunity to really step back and grieve appropriately because we’ve been thrown right into the COVID-19 response,” Williams said. “We have great support from each other and the community, and I think officers are handling it as well as can be expected.”
Williams said Springfield officers appreciated the community support shown after Officer Walsh’s death. He called the show of support on the day of Officer Walsh’s procession “amazing.” He said Walsh’s family is doing well, and will always be supported by SPD. The Springfield Police Officer’s Association has taken the lead in raising funds to support the family. The department is offering support to officers who may be struggling with Walsh’s death.
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