Two arrested after LPD officer was shot, in critical condition

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — Just after 11:30 Wednesday morning, the Metro Area Fugitive Task Force, the Lincoln Police Department (LPD) Gang Unit, and Lincoln police investigators were attempting to apprehend 17-year-old Felipe Vazquez in the 3200 block of Vine Street. Vazquez was wanted for an outstanding second-degree assault warrant related to the March homicide of 37-year-old Edward Varejcka of Lincoln.

Investigators had been searching for Vazquez since Friday, Aug. 21st, when they received information that the suspect was in the area of 33rd and Vine streets. When they attempted to contact the suspect, an individual inside the residence shot a Lincoln police officer. The officer, a 23-year-veteran, was transported to a local hospital and underwent surgery. He remains in critical condition.

After a suspect fired their weapon, another LPD officer returned fire, but no suspects were injured.

Vazquez and another individual, identified as 19-year-old Orion J. Ross, fled the scene but were soon apprehended by Lincoln police officers.

Before the shooting, LPD worked with Lincoln Public Schools to initiate a lockdown at Hartley Elementary School, which was near the scene. The Nebraska State Patrol and Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office (LSO) assisted in the apprehension of these fugitives. LSO interviewed witnesses and are conducting follow-up interviews to establish a timeline of the events. Crime scene technicians are processing the scene for digital and forensic evidence.

There is no ongoing danger to the public, and the investigation is still ongoing.

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