Douglas County DA: Plainclothes detectives were first on scene o - KPTV - FOX 12

Douglas County DA: Plainclothes detectives were first on scene of UCC shooting

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(From left) Roseburg Police Chief Jim Burge, Douglas County District Attorney Rick Wesenberg, Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin (From left) Roseburg Police Chief Jim Burge, Douglas County District Attorney Rick Wesenberg, Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin
ROSEBURG, OR (KPTV) -

Two detectives who were the first to arrive at the scene of the Oct. 1 shooting at Umpqua Community College were not wearing bulletproof vests as they dodged gunfire, Douglas County District Attorney Rick Wesenberg said in a press conference Wednesday.

Wesenberg was joined at the press briefing by Roseburg Police Chief Jim Burge and Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin. All three wore buttons that read 'I am UCC.'

Wesenberg said Det. Sgt. Joe Kaney and Det. Todd Spingath with Roseburg police were on the scene at approximately 10:44 a.m. Thursday, six minutes after the first 911 call.

Two Oregon State Police troopers arrived at the same time.

The detectives heard gunfire and spotted the shooter in the entrance to Snyder Hall and observed the shooter firing in their direction, Wesenberg said.

They fired at the shooter, with two shots hitting the wall of Snyder Hall and one hitting the shooter on his right side.

The shooter then re-entered the building, went back into the classroom and shot and killed himself, Wesenberg said.

Chief Burge said he was proud of the actions of the detectives.

"The shooting at UCC showed what amazing character your police officers have and how they are willing to risk their lives for our community," Burge said.

Detectives Kaney and Spingath both are veterans of the Roseburg Police Department.

Det. Sgt. Kaney is a former Marine who has been with Roseburg PD for 23 years. He received a Medal of Honor and a Purple Heart medal for a shooting in 2005 in which was shot in the ankle.

Det. Spingath, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force who has been with Roseburg PD for 16 years, received a Medal of Valor for the same incident in 2005.

Burge said the detectives rushed to stop the shooter despite the obvious danger given they were being shot at and didn't have bulletproof vests on.

Wesenberg said once the detectives shot the shooter, he didn't hurt or kill any other students.

The detectives don't want to be considered heroes, Burge said, adding they simply feel they were the first to respond and did a job they were trained to do.

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