FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Oct. 18, 2021
Springfield Police Investigate W. Elm Officer-Involved Shooting
On Oct.17, 2021, at 1:10 p.m., a Springfield Police Officer was at the Kum N Go at 215 S. Kansas Expressway when the officer observed a wanted suspect walking on the sidewalk in front of the business. When the officer approached the suspect and attempted to contact him, the male refused to comply with commands and ran from the officer. During the foot pursuit, the suspect displayed a handgun and fired shots at the officer. The officer returned fire at the suspect, but it is not believed that the suspect was struck. A bullet penetrated the material of officer’s uniform, however the officer was not struck by a projectile and did not require any medical attention. The suspect continued to flee by running west from the location and officers lost sight of him.
At approximately 1:14 p.m., the Springfield Police Department received a 911 call from a female stating a male, armed with a gun, entered her residence at 1800 W. Elm. While officers were arriving on scene, the female caller was able to exit the residence with her child. A male resident was still inside the house being held hostage by the armed suspect. Officers set up a perimeter around the residence and started negotiations with the suspect while members of the SPD Special Response Team forced entry into the residence. Officers observed the male suspect and hostage engaged in a struggle over the firearm. An officer then fired shots at the suspect striking him several times causing him to drop his weapon and freeing the hostage. The suspect was transported to a local hospital for gunshot wounds where he later succumbed to his injuries. The hostage and officers were not injured during this incident.
The deceased male was identified as Douglas J. Knakmuhs, a 40-year-old male from Springfield, Missouri. Next of kin notifications have been made to Knakmuhs’ family.
Both officers involved in the shootings have been placed on administrative leave pending an internal and concurrent criminal investigation. This case will be presented to the Greene County Prosecutor for review.
Detectives are asking anyone who has information about this incident to contact the Springfield Police Department at 417-864-1810 or make an anonymous call to Crime Stoppers at 417-869-TIPS (8477).
This incident marks the nineteenth homicide for 2021.
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Case number: 21-37588
Media Contact: PAO Jasmine Bailey
Release authorized by Chief Paul Williams