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More Details Released on Deputy-Involved Fatal Shooting

A 28-year-old man from Gower was shot and killed by a Buchanan County Sheriff's Deputy after a multi-county chase.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.)  A stretch of Hwy. 373 just outside Amazonia is quiet now, just like it usually is. But just 12 hours earlier, it was the the location of the conclusion of a fatal chase.

Buchanan County deputies had crossed county lines in an attempt to get their man.

"It's something that happens quite often in law enforcement," said Buchanan County Sheriff Mike Strong, referring to crossing jurisdictional lines. "There are several different factors including the severity of the crime, the threat to public safety. There are a lot of things considering."

28-year-old Eric Auxier was shot and killed Thursday night. Auxier was the driver of the fleeing vehicle and shot after deputies say he rammed the patrol car chasing him. Two other men in Auxier's vehicle were not hurt or charged.

"This involved somebody who was not compliant, Strong said. "Somebody who took this to a level that we wish it hadn't have went to. But it was a violent act with unfortunate repercussions."

Sheriff Mike Strong isn't saying yet why Auxier was wanted. However, they say they were motivated in catching him.

"The pursuit was actually terminated because it was in the city," he said. "It was picked back up toward the city limits and then followed outside to where it ended up in Amazonia."

The case will be turned over to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

"In collecting evidence, certainly the assets of the crime lab will be utilized out of Jefferson City if needed, and basically try to put together the events as they happened that night," said Sgt. Sheldon Lyon of the Patrol.

Sgt. Lyon says it will take the patrol several weeks to complete the investigation. In the meantime, his thoughts are with the two deputies, who are now on administrative leave.

"We have to understand the traumatic events of the night that this officer has been through, and his family, what the things that they have to process as a person and as a family," he said. "Sometimes we forget to think of that in these events."

One of the two deputies in the patrol car was injured after it was rammed. He was treated and released from Heartland Hospital.
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