PORTLAND, Ore. – A Christmas Day shooting that left a woman dead and led to a chase and gunbattle in a suburb of Portland that injured an Oregon State Police officer and killed the murder suspect, who had a troubled home life, the authorities and the court records said.
Trooper Nic Cederberg, 32, an Army veteran who has been with the department for seven years, underwent surgery Monday and remains in critical condition, state police on the Facebook page.
The incident began when police in King City found the woman’s body after responding to a call about shots being fired late Sunday, Washington County sheriff’s Sgt. David Thompson said.
The suspect, James Tylka, 30, was seen to drive away and the officers pursued him, police said. The pursuit ended with an exchange of gunfire about 20 miles south of Portland.
Authorities have not other information about the chase and shooting, except that the officers of the three police forces that were involved and have been placed on paid administrative leave, a routine move.
But details emerged about Tylka the problems at home. He was locked in a prolonged dispute with his ex-wife over the custody of their son and child support, according to court records.
Social media and court records show he was married to Kate Armand, and that the couple had a baby girl.
Tylka posted a picture on Facebook earlier this month of the pair kissing in happier times and commented: “We are not separate.” Someone responded that she was hoping that they work things out.
The police have not released the name of the woman who he is supposed to have killed, but Megan Armand told the media that the victim was her sister Kate.
“We are still in shock and devastated from last night events,” she said in a statement. “My heart is broken by the loss of my only sister. Our thoughts and prayers are also with the wounded OSP Officer and his family.”
A number of Facebook messages from Kate Armand’s friends expressed sadness, describing her as a good person and a great mother for the nearly 1-year-old girl.
Tylka updated his Facebook profile picture shortly before his death, displaying a photo of the couple. He also has the cover of his photo, with his two children, a boy and a girl.
Tylka’s ex-wife, Sabrina Starks, had filed for immediate temporary custody of their son, in September, saying: the boy was in danger of possible abuse. She said Tylka talked about suicide in September of 2015, the signs of a call to the police, before leaving the city for four months.
Starks wrote in the custody request, that they have agreed to joint custody in May 2016, but he had his act irrational, impulsive and aggressive, constantly pressuring the boy for updates on what she was doing.
She said that the boy was crying when they picked him up on Sept. 5 and that he told her Tylka shouted to him and a grandmother.
“I asked him what he meant. (The boy) said, ” If I don’t tell Dad what you do, he yells at me and sends me to the corner. I said no, and he cries until I tell him,'” she wrote.
A judge denied Starks’ request for immediate temporary guardianship. They separated in April 2011, court records say, but it is not clear when Tylka married Kate Armand. Starks mentioned the marriage in her custody request.
Mike Rowe, a police spokesman in the nearby city of Misc, said Tylka was a cadet there between 2004 and 2006. Rowe said that he did not know why Tylka to the left of the program.
Earlier this month, a car dealer filed a small claim against Tylka, says he owes $450 for a deposit of a vehicle.
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