A Bend police officer who shot and killed a 31-year-old man as he left the back of a northeast Bend home a week ago was identified Friday as a 10-year veteran of the force, but Deschutes County District Attorney Patrick Flaherty said no other information will be released until the investigation is complete.
Flaherty told NewsChannel 21 that Officer Erick Supplee, 37, was the man who fired a single shot that hit Tyler Keinonen, 31, in the chest during an encounter at a home on NE Jackdaw Drive.
Supplee has been placed on paid administrative leave, a standard practice, while Oregon State Police and the DA’s office conduct their investigation.
No other details have been released, other than that the fatal shooting occurred at the rear of the home during an “encounter,” several hours after a raid of the home in a drug, guns and vehicle theft investigation.
The DA noted that Supplee has been with Bend police for 10 years, but added, “No further details will be released until the investigation is complete.”
Supplee and his K-9 partner, Zlatan, were involved in two incidents that made headlines earlier this year. In March, they tracked and found a Redmond man who had led police in a high-speed chase into a northeast Bend neighborhood. Braxton Michael Monson, 27, was found hiding in the backyard of a home on marsh Orchid Drive and taken into custody.
In April, Zlatan pursued and bit Shaun Michael McCurdy, 42, after an attempted traffic stop in northeast Bend led to a high-speed chase and arrest of the fleeing suspect.
OSP troopers say the shooting occurred around 10:30 last Friday night, Nov. 23 as the man left the rear of a home that Bend police say was the target of a drugs, guns and theft raid earlier in the day. A woman was arrested there and her two sons at a business where a second search warrant was served that day.
While investigators interview witnesses, including those neighbors who heard the shot but didn't see what happened, Flaherty also told NewsChannel 21 Tuesday that "there were other officers at that particular residence, but we don't believe they witnessed the shooting itself."
NewsChannel 21’s Brittany Weiner spoke Tuesday with a woman who said her daughter was involved with Keinonen and that he was the person killed. She told us he has a young son, and an extensive criminal record.
Keinonen made headlines in May when he and his younger brother Brock Keinonen, 25, were arrested after their pickup was stopped west of Bend. Drug agents said they found heroin, methamphetamine, prescription drugs and a small amount of marijuana in a search of the truck. They said they were involved in heroin and meth trafficking throughout Deschutes County.
Keinonen was arrested again in July in Sunriver on charges of unauthorized use of a vehicle, second-degree burglary and failure to register as a sex offender, and again on Nov. 4 for failure to register as a sex offender.
Grieving friends have weighed in since Friday night's shooting in comments on KTVZ.COM, painting a portrait of a man who was trying to overcome a troubled past.
One of those friends, Jennifer Winstead, shared a photo of Keinonen Tuesday night and wrote of her memories of the man she called "our Tyler...A man who cared deeply for his friends and family."
"He was a successful business owner (general contractor), a loving father to two kids, a 'give you the shirt off his back' and a 'whatever it takes to make you smile' kinda guy," Winstead wrote.
"He was always willing to share any new knowledge he had learned. He loved the news and football and liked to talk about them. He was many wonderful things. He's more than a rap sheet of horrible choices he made.
"Addiction is a terrible disease...and you add that to falling into the wrong crowd and you have one year out of his life. He was struggling to get through this addiction, and I fully supported him, as many did. And for the record, his '"sexual offense' was from his teenage years. He wasn't a sexual predator."
"He was a loving father, brother and a son," one wrote. "He may have made some bad choices, but who as a human being hasn't? (It) still didn't make him a bad person."
Another friend wrote, "He had a kind heart, but made really bad choices."
A woman who knew Keinonen said he was at the home "just picking up his (clothes in a suitcase) from an old friend's house. He had been doing good and staying clean for about four or five months now."
He died of a single gunshot wound to the chest, Oregon State Medical Examiner Dr. Karen Gunson determined during an autopsy Monday.
Flaherty, whose office is working with Oregon State Police on the investigation, released that finding from the autopsy conducted at Gunson’s office in Clackamas, near Portland. OSP troopers and crime lab personnel attended the autopsy, he said.
The officer’s name and other details about what transpired also were being withheld as the investigation continues.
Troopers said the man was leaving the back of the home at 2878 NE Jackdaw Drive, east of 27th Street and north of Highway 20 when the encounter occurred.
The OSP Criminal Investigations Division and district attorney's Office, assisted by the sheriff's office and Bend police, are investigating the fatal shooting.
Around 10:22 p.m. Friday, Bend police responded to a reported possible burglary in progress at the Jackdaw Drive home, troopers said.
Earlier Friday, Bend police served a search warrant at the home and seized illegally possessed guns, heroin and methamphetamine, troopers said.
"When the officers arrived, one officer encountered a man exiting the back of the residence," OSP said in a news release Saturday afternoon. "The man was shot during the encounter with the police officer."
Medical aid was provided at the scene by officers and responding medics from Bend Fire and Rescue.
The 31-year old man, who was not a resident of the home, was taken to St. Charles-Bend, where he was pronounced dead, troopers said.
Following standard Bend police policy, the officer involved in the shooting has been placed on paid administrative leave. The officer's name also has not been released.
No other information is being released at this time, troopers said.
Neighbors expressed shock at the turn of events, though some said police had been watching the home for months.
"It's really scary," said neighbor Jennifer Gobeille, who said they "heard a sound like a crack" that apparently was the gunshot.
"My kids ride their bikes up and down the street every day," she said. "I mean, we've had interactions with the people that live in this house. It really hit close to home. It kind of made me think, you know, what do we need to do? Do we need to be on guard? Should I be afraid?"
This was the first fatal officer-involved shooting involving Bend police in 5 1/2 years.
In May 2008, Detective Tom Brown, a 14-year Bend police veteran assigned to the Central Oregon Drug Enforcement Team, shot and killed Refugio Cruz-Fuentes, 28, in a vehicle in the driveway of a home on NE Wichita Way during a drug raid.
Authorities said he appeared to be reaching for a weapon, but no gun was found on him or in the vehicle. District Attorney Mike Dugan later ruled the fatal shooting was justified, citing several factors, including the shooting victim's position in the car.