Neenah police: One man dead, another in custody, officer treated & released after hostage situation

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NEENAH -- Neenah police on Saturday evening, December 5th said one man was killed, and a Neenah police officer was hurt in an "active hostage situation" that took place on Main Street. A second suspect is in custody.

Police say just before 9:00 a.m. Saturday, they were dispatched to the Eagle Nation Cycle facility at 206 Main Street for a report of a person causing a disturbance.

Information received by police indicated a male subject had fired at least one shot, and hostages had been taken.

Officers secured the area, and additional resources were called out to the scene, including: the Fond du Lac Police Department, the Appleton Police Department, the Winnebago County Sheriff's Department, the Wisconsin State Patrol, the Town of Menasha and Menasha Police Departments.

Homes were evacuated in the area as crews responded to the scene.

Around 9:30 a.m., police received specific information that hostages were in immediate danger of being killed. Officers then entered the Eagle Nation Cycle facility to rescue the hostages -- and those officers were met with gunfire.

One male Neenah police officer was shot by someone inside the building.

That officer was hit in his "ballistic helmet," police say -- and according to Neenah Police Chief Kevin Wilkinson, that prevented the shot from being potentially fatal.

The wounded officer was taken to the hospital -- where he was treated and released.

Police say a male subject exited the Eagle Nation Cycle facility with a firearm, and refused commands to drop that firearm.

That male subject was then shot at by one or more officers on scene.

Chief Wilkinson said investigators don't know whether he was also shot at by someone inside the business.

He was taken to the hospital, where he died. Police haven't released his name.

Police say that this man was NOT the same armed person who created the initial disturbance at Eagle Nation Cycle, and reportedly fired shots.

The Neenah Police Department's "Hostage Negotiation Team" made phone contact and negotiated for several hours with a second suspect inside the facility.

During that time, police say hostages were released unharmed. When asked for a specific number of hostages that were inside the building, Chief Wilkinson said "several," and indicated there were at least three, and less than 10.

Around 1:00 p.m., the male subject believed to have fired the initial shots agreed to exit the building.

He was taken into custody without incident.

The officer-involved shooting is being investigated by the Wisconsin Department of Justice's Division of Criminal Investigation.

"I am glad that it turned out as good as it did. We still ended up with a loss of life, and it's tragic that that would happen in our community. It's unfortunate that this happens anywhere. Tragedy can strike anywhere. The reality for law enforcement is even if you are in a small, rural area, you better have training and equipment to deal with these kinds of things," Chief Wilkinson said.

An investigation is underway to determine what led to the hostage situation -- and again, the DOJ's Division of Criminal Investigation is leading the investigation into the officer-involved shooting.

Chief Wilkinson said Saturday evening those at the Eagle Nation Cycle facility Saturday were people "who would normally frequent" the business.

WLUK spoke with Cole White, the attorney for the owner of Eagle Nation Cycles, Steve Erato.

White says a suspect in this case had sold his motorcycle to a third party. That third party was having the bike worked on at the shop. But the suspect decided he wanted the motorcycle back.

"He came in demanding his bike back and took hostages and the situation escalated from there," White said.

White says Erato does not know the suspect personally.

According to White, Erato was threatened by the suspect, but not hurt.

"He was able to get into the basement of the facility and secure himself away from the main interaction," White said. "But in a sense he was trapped down there against his will. It's a difficult situation. It's obviously a stressful and emotional situation. And he's doing as well as I think can be expected under all of the circumstances."

White says the incident left everyone involved shaken.

Monitor FOX6 News and FOX6Now.com for updates on this developing story.

Google Map for coordinates 44.187286 by -88.465692.

15 comments

    • HarryFGolub

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  • Anonymous

    Your preaching to the choir my first WEEK in milwaukee i watched 2 guys running down the street shooting at each other at 830 in the morning neighbors shook their heads and went back inside not a cop was called and when u make the mistake of living in these neighborhoods you understand why. Needless to say i did move

  • grunt

    Barack Hussein Obama wants to take away the armored rescue vehicle like the one used in Neenah from police departments. This same type of vehicle was used in San Bernadino.
    Does BHO hate all Americans, or just the police?

  • GinaRStark

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  • jp

    Wow. ..
    Sketchy…
    Let’s see all the video and audio without any delay period…..

    Cover up…
    Law suit ???? Against police department …???
    Hostage shot. ?
    No officer recognized this man. ???
    Million Dollar law suit ..??
    The police are the victims….
    Bull…..
    The total population isn’t stupid.
    X xxxviii release all audio and video. X xxxviii
    Not another cover up. ….

    Ps…..

    Pay the millions you never had a case ……

  • Molon labe

    This is messed up, where is his PROM picture instead of this one of him at a party years ago. You could at LEAST use his GRADUATION PICTURE…Racists..

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