SPRINGFIELD, Mo.- The Springfield Police Department has identified the man shot and killed by officers near Downing Street Pour House Thursday night.
According to a press release, the man has been identified as 21-year-old Seth S. Rynio from Lebanon, Missouri.
Police say officers were sent to the scene around 9:39 p.m. for a check person call. Police say Rynio was reported to be intoxicated and causing a disturbance, and police were called after he had left the restaurant.
Callers told dispatchers that Rynio was seen running to the east side of Barnes & Noble and other witnesses reported that he was armed with a handgun.
When police arrived, they found Rynio hiding in some bushes on the southeast corner of Barnes & Noble. Officers then created a perimeter around the bookstore in order to make contact with Rynio. A Springfield-Greene County Park Ranger was also called to assist officers. The park ranger drove to the east side of Barnes & Noble, where Rynio fired multiple gunshots at the ranger. Police say the park ranger was hit by several bullets.
Officers on the scene near the south of Barnes & Noble heard the shots, and two of them fired and shot Rynio. Rynio was pronounced dead at the scene, and the park ranger was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
“Both Springfield Police Department Officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave pending an internal investigation. This case will be presented to the Greene County Prosecutor for review and determination of any criminal charges,” the press release states.
On Friday night, the businesses in the area were open, including Downing Street Pour House.
Police add that Park Rangers are law enforcement officers, commissioned through the Greene County Sheriff’s Office and dispatched through Springfield-Greene County 911. The park rangers do have jurisdiction in both the city and county, not limited to parks.
The Park Board’s Public Information Officer told us there are seven park rangers, including Chief Ranger, and since they are commissioned law enforcement officers, they can carry a weapon. If an agency such as Springfield Police, Greene County Sheriff’s Office, Airport Police, or School Resource Officers asks for backup, rangers will help if they are in the area.
Springfield-Greene County Park Board Director Bob Belote issued this statement,
First off, all our thoughts and prayers are with our park ranger and his family, as well as the Springfield Police officers involved in this incident. We are extremely proud of our park rangers and the work they do with our law enforcement partner agencies, who work tirelessly and too often in harm’s way in keeping our community safe.
This shooting marks the 22nd homicide for 2021.
Springfield Mayor Ken McClure provided to following statement:
“Last evening our Springfield Police Officers and a Springfield-Greene County Park Ranger were put in harm’s way, responding to a disturbance call. My heart goes out to the ranger and the SPD officers involved in the incident. I am extremely proud of the work our public safety personnel do every day.”Springfield Mayor Ken McClure