Sheriff releases names of deputies involved in pursuit

Sheriff Terry Wagner released the names of deputies involved in Monday's pursuit that ended in a fatal crash.

Because the chase ended in death for 17-year old Damon Wilson, the chase and the actions of the deputies are now under investigation.

The Lancaster County Sheriff's office says it was around 5:15 pm when they got the call.  They say 17–year old Damon Wilson was threatening his family with a machete at their home near NW 91st and West O street.

They say the person who called 911 said Wilson left in their car. On the way to the home the Sheriff says Deputy Ronald Boden spotted the car, but first waited for backup or Sergeant Thomas Brookhouser to arrive before trying to stop him.

“Obviously when the traffic stop started the pursuit began and both units were in pursuit when the crash happened,” says Sheriff Terry Wagner. 

The deputies pursued Wilson all the way into Seward county.

During the chase, the Sheriff's office says Wilson tried passing another car and slammed into a pickup.  The deputies and witnesses saw Wilson's car burst into flames.  Wilson was pronounced dead at the scene.

Now the deputies, who have a combined 39 years of service under their belt, are on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation.

“As a matter of practice we do an internal investigation into the event to determine if the actions of the deputies were in fact proper and according to policy and procedure,” says Sheriff Wagner.

The Sheriff's office says they will transcribe the 911 tapes and take a closer look at the camera that was on Deputy Boden's cruiser.

The Lancaster County Sheriff's office has a complex procedure when it comes to high speed pursuits.

A deputy has a lot of things to consider, including the speed of the chase, what the person's wanted for, how much traffic is on the road, and is it worth the possibility of innocent people getting hurt.

All these things will most likely be reviewed by a grand jury. A grand jury is required by state law anytime a person dies during a chase.

State law requires the sheriff's office to review those chase procedures every year.