Man Killed By OKC Officers ID’ed As Career Criminal
OKLAHOMA CITY - The man shot and killed Wednesday night by Oklahoma City police officers is being identified as a career criminal who was on parole at the time of the shooting.
The killing caused a traffic nightmare along I-35 during a good chunk of Wednesday evening on the busiest travel day of the year. A sea of brake lights caused headaches for hundreds of drivers with a body in the middle of I-35 on the city's South Side.
"There [were] about four or five cops with their guns drawn on a guy, and then I heard, pop, pop, pop, so I ducked," witness Michael Ratliff told News 9.
Police say 40-year-old Simon P. Ramirez pointed a gun at drivers and officers. Police say two of their own shot Ramirez dead.
"Ultimately, the officers were faced with the situation of protecting themselves and the public, and they had to shoot the suspect," OKC Fraternal Order of Police VP Mark Nelson said.
Nelson says both officers are doing well and were able to go home to their families without injuries. The shooting comes one day after a jury convicted a former Del City police captain for shooting an 18-year-old unarmed man in the back. However, the current known facts of Wednesday's case are much different.
"We're optimistic that the investigation will show that our officers acted within their duties," said Nelson.
Moments before the shooting, police say officers were chasing Ramirez in a stolen car. Department of Corrections' records show Ramirez had been convicted on drug-related charges in the past. Ramirez's Facebook page shows he was married and was living in Oklahoma City.
The initial on-scene investigation took more than five hours with an I-35 service road not reopening until just before midnight.