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Police officer shoots and kills Wainwright soldier

Posted: Sunday, July 28, 2002

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A soldier from Fort Wainwright was shot and killed by a Fairbanks police officer after a high speed chase through the city.

Michael S. Eutenier, 19, of Kelseyville, Calif., died Saturday at Alaska Regional Medical Center, according to a nursing supervisor. He was placed on life support until his family arrived.

Eutenier and a friend, Derrick A. Lawhorn, 22, attended a barbecue at Chena Lakes Recreation Area Saturday evening with friends, according to Lawhorn's girlfriend.

The 20-year-old Fairbanks woman said the two men began to taunt her by calling her names. She said one of them took her sandals and threw them into the campfire. At one point, Lawhorn hurled a can of chewing tobacco at her, hitting her in the face, she said.

The woman left the barbecue to go home, but she said that Eutenier and Lawhorn followed her in a red truck. Eutenier was driving, repeatedly steering his truck toward her car and trying to run her off the road, she said. She called police on her cell phone.

Police said they spotted the red truck and the woman's vehicle coming off the Richardson Highway exit ramp onto the Mitchell Expressway, going north. They followed the vehicles and saw Eutenier driving in a reckless manner, tailgating and swerving at the woman's vehicle with the truck.

Eutenier stopped at an intersection but quickly drove away when an officer walked toward the truck, police said. Eutenier sped through several stop signs and into a parking lot where he tried to drive up a steep bank.

Two police cars pulled in behind him and the officers got out of their cars. Eutenier put his truck into reverse and rammed into the front of the parked police cars, police said. He then drove forward and directly toward one of the officers.

The officer, whose name was not being released, drew his pistol and fired through the front windshield, striking Eutenier. He was taken to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital and later transported to Anchorage.

Eutenier's passenger, Derrick Lawhorn, was arrested by troopers and charged with fourth-degree domestic assault. He was arraigned Saturday. He was being held on $5,000 bail at the Fairbanks Correctional Center.



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