News that an officer was stabbed in Luther put a community on edge Thursday afternoon; and news that the suspect who hurt him has not been caught keep tensions high for residents in the search area.
Luther Police Chief David Randall posted a statement on Facebook just before 8pm saying the incident occurred before 2pm December 14 when Deputy Chief Mike Class was driving westbound on 164th Street and observed a pedestrian and stopped to see if he needed assistance. But when the officer tried to make contact with the pedestrian, the pedestrian turned away.
Randall said “when Class tried to grab the subject, who then quickly turned around brandishing an unknown type knife (sic.) struck Class in the left forearm several times causing lacerations.” In an attempt to create distance, Randall said Class fell in the loose gravel. “At this time, the subject made good his escape running southbound on Dobbs Road.”
By 2:30 pm all manner of law enforcement and the media were on the scene. A perimeter was set up roughly in the area of 164th and Dobbs going south to 150th. The Oklahoma City police helicopter was in the air as well as the television stations’ helicopters. While The Luther Register was reporting via Facebook Live, Deputy Class drove by us in his LPD vehicle. We were later told he drove himself to the hospital for medical care.
See the FB Live video in which Dep. Chief Class drives by us on the way to medical care.
Nicoma Park, Spencer, Oklahoma City Police Departments and Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office were on scene. Canine units also participated in the manhunt. The search went on until dark when units began leaving the area.
Chief Randall said in his report, “During the course of these searches, radio report alerted agencies of a white male with no shirt running across Harrah Road into Bowman Ranch. Units then relocated to that area where law enforcement canvassed the area to no avail.”
Bowman’s Ranch is near 150th and Harrah Road, about two miles from where the incident occurred, and technically out of the Luther Town limits.
Officer Tony Walker told The Luther Register in a phone call just after 6 pm that the official search was called off for the night. And he said Deputy Chief Class was treated and was on his way home.
The suspect is described as a white male, 5’11,” 160 pounds. At the time of the incident, he was wearing a black hoodie, dark colored jeans with black boots.
Randall’s social media post on The Town of Luther’s Facebook page said:
The Luther Police Department will have extra officers in town this evening with an added presence of Oklahoma County deputies.
If you have any concerns please do not hesitate to contact law enforcement via 911 in an emergency or (405) 713-1044 in a non-emergency.
Parents of Luther Public Schools students said they received a phone message that two buses that normally run in the area would not run but parents could pick up their children at the end of school Thursday.
The scene of the stabbing was a couple of miles south of town and the schools, and south of the Turner Turnpike. The search is expected to resume on Friday.