Who is Jeffrey Wittstruck?
Jeffrey Wittstruck is an Omaha police officer who was reportedly shot in the dance and top of his head responding to a shoplifting call at a department store in Nebraska. Officer Wittstruck was dispatched to Westroads Mall’s JCPenney store, where security had reported a suspected shoplifter.
Mr. Wittstruck has been with Omaha Police Department since 2016.
How old is Jeffrey Wittstruck?
Jeffrey Wittstruck is believed to be in his 30s.
Jeffrey Wittstruck Omaha Police Officer
The incident took place on Friday, March 12 at approximately 3:27 p.m. at a JC Penney’s department store in Omaha, Nebraska, when Officer Wittstruck was dispatched to a report of a shoplifter who had been detained by security after they allegedly observed him taking a package of t-shirts and placing them in his backpack before attempting to exit the establishment without paying for them, according to the Omaha Police Department.
Authorities say that the suspect initially gave store security a fake name and was not forthcoming or cooperative after being stopped.
The situation escalated quickly after Officer Wittstruck, who has been with the Omaha Police Department since September 2016, arrived on the scene.
“Officer Wittstruck directed Jenkins to remove his backpack at which time Jenkins stood up and placed his right hand in his sweatshirt pocket. Officer Wittstruck asked Jenkins to show his hands multiple times but Jenkins refused. Officer Wittstruck informed Jenkins he was under arrest and Jenkins remained uncooperative, pushing Officer Wittstruck away while he attempted to place handcuffs on Jenkins”, said Police Chief Todd Schmaderer.
Who Shot Jeffrey Wittstruck?
The suspect was later confirmed to be 21-year-old Kenya Lamont Jenkins. According to the Omaha Police Department, Wittstruck and Jenkins got into a brief struggle before Wittstruck drew his taser and Jenkins placed his hand back into his sweatshirt pocket.
The police officer then deployed the taser but it was ineffective in stopping the situation with Jenkins. Wittstruck attempted to arrest Jenkins for the second time in a brief struggle when the suspect pulled a gun out of his sweatshirt pocket and fired four times at Wittstruck, who was hit in his face.
Officer Wittstruck’s firearm had not been removed from its holster and was not fired at any point in the altercation with Jenkins.
Wittstruck was transported to the Nebraska Medical Center in critical condition but is “stable and recovering,” according to police.
Police in Omaha, Neb. say officer Jeffrey Wittstruck is in critical, but stable condition after being shot in his head by a 21-year-old man who was stealing tee-shirts.https://t.co/205VKJrtOd
— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) March 14, 2021
Jeffrey Wittstruck Nebraska
“Officer Wittstruck fell to the ground and Jenkins ran out of the office,” said Schmaderer. “There were no security cameras in the office but Officer Wittstruck’s body-worn camera recorded the entire incident. Security cameras recorded the suspect fleeing out of the store and driving away in a white BMW.”
Officer Wittstruck is now in stable condition and recovering from the gunshot wounds suffered in the altercation.
According to Schmaderer, with the help of the Nebraska State Patrol, a perimeter was placed around the area to search for Jenkins after he fled the crime scene. The Omaha Police Department said that Jenkins has a “previous history of resisting arrests and escape.”