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Posted on: February 28, 2023

High Risk Traffic Stop Results in Arrest and Shooting

Wyatt Warnken

Kootenai County, Idaho - On the afternoon of Friday, February 24, 2023 the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) Special Investigations Unit (SIU) assisted by the Coeur d’Alene Police Department’s Community Action Team (CAT) were conducting a surveillance for a known narcotics dealer who was believed to be armed.  The dealer was found to be a passenger in a vehicle and with the assistance from members of the Kootenai County Sheriff/Coeur d’Alene Police Joint Agency SWAT Team, a high risk traffic stop was initiated on Seltice Way west of Atlas Road.

During the course of the high risk stop, the narcotics dealer, identified as 31 year old Post Falls resident Wyatt Warnken, was taken into custody without incident.  While the male driver was being detained, deputies and officers on-scene heard a loud pop.  They immediately recognized the pop to be a gunshot coming from within the stopped vehicle.   Once additional tactical equipment arrived, deputies and officers approached the vehicle and found that the female passenger, a 30 year old Coeur d’Alene resident, had shot herself.  The female passenger was removed from the vehicle and medical aid was rendered by medics at the scene before she was transported to a local hospital where she was later pronounced deceased.

KCSO Detectives responded to the scene of the traffic stop and handled the investigation of the shooting while SIU Detectives booked Warnken into the KCSO Jail.   Warnken was booked on one count of Trafficking Methamphetamine, one count of Possession with Intent to Deliver Fentanyl, two counts of Delivery of Methamphetamine, one count of Delivery of Fentanyl and one count of Felon in Possession of a Firearm. 

Sheriff Robert B. Norris
Case #: 23-06104/23-08408

Contact: Lt. Zachary Sifford
Office: 208-446-2245
February 28, 2023
PIO Cell: 208-758-1045

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