Domestic fight ends with Gardner police fatally shooting woman - KCTV5

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Domestic fight ends with Gardner police fatally shooting woman

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Deanne Choate, 53, was killed Thursday night when officers were called to her boyfriend's house because he said she fired a gun. Deanne Choate, 53, was killed Thursday night when officers were called to her boyfriend's house because he said she fired a gun.
GARDNER, KS (KCTV) -

A grandmother is dead after two Gardner police officers fired shots in her home while responding to a 911 call from the woman's boyfriend.

She has been identified as Deanne Choate, 53.

Police say a man called 911 about 9:45 p.m. Thursday, because his girlfriend had fired a handgun inside their house.

Two Gardner officers responded to the 400 Block of North Birch, near Madison Avenue and Moonlight Road. The man was able to get out of the house when police arrived.

Officials say both officers fired shots at the woman. It's unclear whether she initially fired at them. The two officers have been placed on paid leave, which is standard.

"All we know right now is they got called to the residence after the wife discharged the firearm. They go inside, they encounter the wife, two Gardner officers discharge their weapons," said Sgt. Bryan Hill, of the Olathe Police Department. “Specific details will probably be coming forward as we move through this."

The woman died at the scene, according to MedAct.

Friends of the couple are devastated and searching for answers to what happened.

“She's a wonderful, wonderful friend. She would have done anything for anybody. This is such a tragedy, we're all going to miss her so much,” said Jamie Howard, a friend of Choate.

Howard couldn't believe it when she learned police killed her friend of seven years inside the home she stayed with her boyfriend.

Next-door neighbor Christine Hatch said she saw two officers outside the home when she got back from softball about 10 p.m.

“My spouse actually heard a gunshot, it kind of threw us both off and we're like ‘What's going on?' and saw all these cops pulling up surrounding our entire street,” Hatch said.

She said Choate and her boyfriend were inseparable.

“They were always together, they always seemed so happy riding their bikes,” Hatch said. “We never heard anything."

The couple were known to hang out at the Rooster's Neighborhood Bar and Grill, located less than a mile from the man's house. A bartender said they had been there drinking Thursday night and left about 9 p.m.

Howard said it wasn't like her to have a gun or use it to one to cause harm.

“That's not like her,” she said. “For Dee to have one in her hands, just to be picking up in a threatening situation, I would have never in a million years.”

Another neighbor heard a series of five gunshots followed by a scream.

"There's one shot followed by four shots, then we heard a scream of  'Oh, my God!' He left, was able to get out of the house," Gary Smethers said. "And we saw the police officer standing in the doorway there and she was right in front of him on the ground."

Officers spent Friday using metal detectors to search nearby backyards for bullets and evidence involved in the case. Olathe police are assisting with the case.

The Johnson County Sheriff's Department and the Olathe Police Department are investigating. Police say both officers are on routine administrative leave. Police say the two Gardner officers have a total of 11 and a half years of experience with the department. One of the officers has been on the department for 10 years and the second has been on the department for a year and a half.

Neither their names nor the 911 recording are being released right now.

Gardner police officers on the scene said this was the first deadly police shooting the department has been involved in in more than 100 years. New Gardner Police Chief James Pruetting, who just started at the end of February, denied an interview request.

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