Off-duty officer shoots, kills armed man at KS Costco

Posted at 3:21 AM, Nov 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-27 03:21:17-05

LENEXA, KS (WDAF/CNN) – An off-duty officer in Kansas, who happened to be in the right place at the right time, saved lives when he confronted a man who walked into Costco with a gun.

Police confirm an unidentified man brandishing a firearm walked into a Lenexa, KS, Costco Sunday morning.

Within moments, terror drove many people to the exits, but others were trapped inside.

"I heard some commotion happening around me, and I turned to look at the front door and saw a guy walking in, hands up, just kind of yelling and screaming. One of my co-workers told me to drop, and I did,” said Ryan Vacca, who works at the Costco photo center.

Some of those inside, including Nikki Lotia, thought they were going to die.

"Instead of running with the crowd towards the back, I went towards the pharmacy area,” Lotia said. "Scary, it was very scary, that 45 minutes of my life. All of the time I was thinking, ‘This might be my last day.’”

But among the shoppers was an off-duty Kansas City, KS, officer. The man, who has not yet been identified, shot the suspect, who died.

Police say no one else was injured.

"He was just shopping. He was just shopping and happened to be there when all this occurred. Thankfully, he was,” said Capt. Wade Borchers with Lenexa Police.

Lotia says she’s grateful for that officer, who helped her make it home to her family.

"He was there right on time. He saved – at least he saved my life, and I am thankful for him,” she said.

The investigation is ongoing.

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