SPRINGFIELD, Ore. (KOIN 6) — A 44-year-old woman is in critical condition after being shot by a Springfield police officer in the early hours of Thursday.
The shooting happened around 1:30 a.m. at a Chevron station on Highway 34 in Linn County, officials said in a release, and happened after police chased a stolen car.
The car, a 2000 Suzuki Vitara, was chased on I-5 by Springfield police, the Oregon State Police and the Linn County Sheriff’s Office. Spike strips were used along with driving techniques to stop the suspect.
The Suzuki left I-5 and headed west on Highway 34 before it stopped at the Chevron station, authorities said. The driver — the only person in the car — ran toward the store.
As she ran, authorities said she pointed a handgun at the officers, who then shot her.
Amanda Lynn Gatewood is in critical condition at a Corvallis hospital.
KOIN 6 News found Gatewood has two warrants out for her arrest in Lane County for identity theft and possession of meth and heroin.
Officials said a replica 1911 semi-automatic handgun was found at the scene, and video surveillance footage is being used in the investigation.
“All the officers know, generally speaking, is they’re in a pursuit and someone has exited and is pointing what has been described to me as an extremely realistic looking 1911-style semi automatic handgun,” Albany Police Capt. Eric Carter said.
“Generally speaking, it’s seconds or fractions of seconds in a scenario such as this,” he said. “If someone points what by all appearances appears to be a functioning real fire arm, it’s a matter of a fraction of a second for that officer to decide is this a threat and how do I respond.”
Tiana Scott, who works at the Shell Gas station next door said she saw police detectives collecting evidence when she showed up for work.
“They were over there taking pictures and people were up on this big ladder taking pictures from the air,” she said.
The officers involved were not named at this time, and are on administrative leave – standard protocol in similar matters. The investigation continues.