(MUNSTER) — A psychiatric patient disarmed and fatally shot a retired police officer at a northwest Indiana hospital early Tuesday before another retired officer working security at the hospital fatally shot the patient, a sheriff said.
The man was at Community Hospital in Munster when he began beating a nurse about 1 a.m., Lake County Sheriff Oscar Martinez told The (Northwest Indiana) Times. The patient was later identified by the Lake County Coroner’s Office as Jamal Williams, 22, of Lansing, Illinois.
“I’m told he was beating the nurse pretty badly,” Martinez said.
Two retired sheriff’s officers working security at the hospital responded to the attack and a struggle ensued during which the patient loosened a gun from one officer’s gun belt and opened fire, shooting the officer in the arm and causing a fatal wound, the sheriff said.
The other security officer returned fire, killing the patient, Martinez said.
Retired Lake County sheriff’s officer Ryan Askew, 59, of Crown Point, died at Community Hospital, the coroner’s office said.
The sheriff said his department was in shock that one of their own retired officers was gone. Martinez said he said he knew both officers and called them “great guys.” The other officer’s name wasn’t immediately released.
“As a young officer myself, I trained under these guys as a rookie. This is just shocking. Our whole department will be suffering from this loss,” he said.
A heavy police presence remained at the hospital Tuesday morning, with a row of about 10 Lake County sheriff’s vehicles in front of the facility.