Man Arrested For Shooting At Deputies, Stealing Cruiser

A man is in custody following an officer-involved shooting incident and search that began New Year's Eve night and ended early New Year's Day.

The Nebraska State Patrol says the incident began Monday evening when the Howard County Sheriff's Office attempted to make a traffic stop north of Elba.  The driver, identified as 30 year old Luke Lefever of Broken Bow, then engaged the deputies with a handgun. 

During the exchange, Lefever was able to gain access to a Sheriff’s deputies vehicle and took off. Lefever also gained access to a shotgun stored in the cruiser. The cruiser spun out and a second exchange of gunfire took place.  Lefever then fled on foot.  Officers from the St. Paul Police Department were also involved, but did not discharge their weapons. 

At that point, several local and state law enforcement agencies arrived on scene and set up a perimeter. The NSP helicopter and SWAT team was deployed to assist in the search. Using an light armored vehicle, SWAT began searching the area.

They were able to track Lefever into a creek bed.  An NSP K9 was then sent in to help take him into custody. The shotgun was found at the scene.   Lefever was found with a gunshot wound to his left forearm and was showing signs of hypothermia. 

He was transported to the St. Paul hospital for treatment. He was then taken by medical helicopter to St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center in Lincoln. 

No officers were injured at any point throughout the incident.  A determination of charges is pending.

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