Sheriff: Deputies ambushed after responding to 911 call that was really “an attempt to kill cops”


COLUMBIA, SC – A Sheriff in South Carolina is alleging that his deputies were called to an area when someone dialed 911.

Instead of someone needing help, the deputies were met with gunfire in what seems to be an apparent attempt to kill officers.

The Richland County Sheriff, Leon Lott, reported that his deputies received a 911 call in the Carriage Oaks area in the early morning hours by a man claiming he had heard a woman screaming for help.

Three deputies responded to the scene that was given by the 911 caller and made contact with a woman who told them that she was fine and there were no issues.

After finding no problem at the scene, the deputies began to leave and when they did so they were hit with a barrage of gunfire.

At least one of the rounds fired broke the passenger side window of one of the police vehicles and embedded in the dash of the car.

Deputy Joseph Shannonhouse, who was driving the vehicle that was hit, suffered injuries to his eyes as glass from the breaking window struck him in the eyes and face.

Deputy Shannonhouse was able to make an abrupt U-turn and get out of the line of fire. In all, Sheriff Lott reported there were over 15 rounds fired by the suspect.

Deputies called for further assistance as they could not determine where the shots were coming from. Sheriff Lot said:

“Deputies could not immediately determine where the rounds were coming from and they did not return fire. Instead, they established a perimeter and closed off the neighborhood.”

Responding deputies arrived on the scene and began searching the area.

During that search, they discovered a deceased male in the residence next to the address given in the 911 call. Sheriff Lott believes that the male was the one who made the call and attacked his deputies before committing suicide.

Sheriff Lott identified the deceased male as 25-year-old Frederic Westfall who was found with a long rifle and tactical gear.

The Sheriff believes that Westfall is the one who called 911 and laid in wait until he had the opportunity to fire on the deputies in what he calls an “ambush.”

Even though detectives with the Richland County Sheriff’s Office have been able to identify Westfall as the attacker, they reported they still have yet to figure out why he wanted to ambush the deputies. The Sheriff said:

“We are very lucky we didn’t have an officer killed in an ambush like the incidents that happened in Spartanburg and Cayce. It’s not because our shooter didn’t try, he certainly did.

These deputies have a dangerous job, and I am thankful they were able to go home to their families.”

Deputy Shannonhouse was transported to a nearby hospital where he was treated for his injuries. The Sheriff’s Office reported he is thankfully expected to make a full recovery.


Officer ambushed and shot in the face while engaging carjacker – yet plans to return to work immediately

MISSOURI CITY, TX – “She went down immediately. She took a bullet to her right side of the face, and it exited behind her right ear,” Missouri City Police Chief Michael Berezin said.

“After she was struck, she did not stay down and lay there to die. She struggled back to her feet to try to complete the mission until she physically couldn’t, and the other officers got there.”

Those were the chilling words spoken over the weekend after a vehicle pursuit in Missouri City left Officer Crystal Sepulveda in the hospital after an alleged carjacker shot her three times in an attempt to avoid capture.

Here is what we know about the incident that nearly cost the 29-year-old officer her life.

Saturday night, Sepulveda and other officers spotted a vehicle reported stolen on Northwest Harris County.

For those unfamiliar with the Houston metropolitan area, Missouri city and the northwest portion of Harris County are not exactly close.

Officer ambushed and shot in the face while engaging carjacker - yet plans to return to work immediately
Google Maps screenshot of approximate locations in the Officer Sepulveda shooting

Officers attempted to pull the vehicle over, but the driver led them on a chase.

The carjacker eventually stopped the car and bailed out, running into the backyard of a home.

Sepulveda entered the backyard in an attempt to locate the suspect. That is when he opened fire. She was shot in the face, left calf and left foot.

She went down for a brief second and then got back to her feet.

Chief Berezin said that the bullet that impacted her face shattered her cheek bone and then exited her ear.

“She was just trying to make the community safer and get the bad person off the street. He chose to hide and intentionally ambush her,” Texas Municipal Police Association Field Service Supervisor Clint McNear said.

She was rushed to Memorial Hermann in the Texas Medical Center where she was treated for non-life-threatening injuries and is expected to make a full recovery. She underwent reconstructive surgery to repair her cheek bone.

The following video was posted on Fox 26 Houston’s YouTube channel. It shows officers arriving at the hospital and carrying Sepulveda into the Emergency Room.

After shooting Sepulveda, the gunman ran down the block before entering another back yard. Pursuing law enforcement were able to locate him.

Two officers from the Houston PD were joined by a Texas state (DPS) trooper and a Fort Bend County sheriff’s deputy. When the four entered the backyard, the suspect again unloaded on them.

They returned fire, striking the suspect several times.

He was transported to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The deceased suspect was identified as 19-year-old Jeffrey Bundrent. He suffered gunshot wounds to the neck, torso, arms, and legs.

No other officers were wounded in the incident.

All the agencies involved are conducting their own investigations into the officer involved shooting. The Texas Rangers will be leading the official investigation as is the norm for OIS incidents in Texas.

KHOU 11 reports that in spite of her injuries, the young officer is in good spirits. She is a 3-year veteran of the Missouri City Police Department.

“[She’s] an amazing person and outstanding officer. She is extremely well-rounded, and she volunteers to do a lot of extra duty things,” Berezin said.

The chief also said he hopes she is able to fully recover and return to the street, as she is one of the best he has.

She indicated that she wants to be back on the job as soon as possible.

“These are humans willing to risk it all for something greater than themselves, and Crystal Sepulveda, Officer Sepulveda is the epitome of that,” Berezin told ABC 13.

“She genuinely cares about the community. She is willingly risking it all every day with all of the officers that I have here, so she just genuinely cares about people.”

Help a Hero page has been set up to assist the mother of a 4-year-old with additional expenses.

Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today?  With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.  

Make sure you click “following” and then click “see first” so you don’t miss a thing!  (See image below.)  Thanks for being a part of the LET family!
Facebook Follow First
Submit a Correction
Related Posts