Cheektowaga Police Chief David Zack- Wednesday Briefing

Speeches and Events
Wednesday, November 15th

Chief Zack and his colleagues talk with reporters about the latest after a shooter opened fire Tuesday .


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Good morning. I'd like to start out this morning. With the information that is most important. And that is the status of the victim in yesterday's shooting. We cannot release the victim's name at this time. We are still. In the process of obtaining a formal statement from him. We hope to have that statement. Later today so we cannot release. The name of the make it to an evil witness known. Can't tell you. He's at 53 year old resident of Cheektowaga. And that we can confirm that he was hit by a single shot of gunfire. Miraculously. This bone was minor in nature. He was released from the hospital last night. And he is now home with family. So that's the good news. I can also now confirm reports that we did in fact. Have a couple civilian heroes yesterday who played a crucial role in stopping the attack. And assisting in the apprehension. I hope to meet with these brave citizens later today and thank them for their actions. There is no question. These individuals saved lives yesterday. They are heroes. I can't release their names at this time. Until I receive their permission. Their identities will become known so and they deserve our community's gratitude. Travis green was arraigned in town court this morning. He has been charged with attempted murder in the second degree. B felony. Criminal use of a firearm first degree B felony. Reckless endangerment in the first degree a salt in the second degree. A and resisting arrest which is an aid misdemeanor. Further charges related to New York six states say effect are being researched. Is now being held without bail. Green has had previous contact with the Cheektowaga police department all of these incidents were very minor. In nature his last known contact with a loss was in 2013. He was not someone we were familiar with or that we had repeated encounters with. As of yet we have still not establish motives for his actions however I believe we would be safe in ruling out terrorism. The FBI is currently researching his background so of course that may change. A total cost twenty spent casings have you been recovered from the scene thus far. 850 additional live rounds were were were recovered. From the vehicle. And loaded magazines. The ATF is currently researching the background of the weapons recovered. Yesterday I stayed we felt additional. Weapons may have been in the in the vehicle green was believed to be operating. There were none. Green was injured yesterday and his injuries were also minor in nature. And we still are not certain whether they occurred prior to work during his apprehension. There was. Video recorded of the incident itself. And the aftermath. Obviously we can't show any video that would jeopardize the integrity of the investigation. But I do we believe we have some live. Shots yesterday from an in car camera. That show the actual. Apprehension so we will play those four. This is again taken from one of our in car cameras. And it shows. The assailant being taken down. And apprehended. By you tomorrow which. That athletic rather red. Agile individual that was lieutenant. Tony for Lipsky who affected the rust. At this time I guess I could take any questions you guys have you missed some minor interactions risk and perhaps most recent 2013. Traffic related. Traffic related. Yeah. Do what they do. They intervened they reacted I I still we're we're still getting some official statements. They were instrumental. In stopping the fiery day they can count they addressed him. And took physical action. Towards in my I can't get into all the details right now we're still waiting for some official statements that but they definitely. Intervened and stopped the threat. Again you yeah only for me but there are reports. Do Carnegie. It's car. Get and is it. We can't confirm that he was struck by Kara. It was solid the civilian who did have a vehicle. And eat at some point approached him with a vehicle got out chased him around the building along with another individual. Until the police. Arrived integral in the custody and answer. Just in the game in Pittsburgh. I cannot. Correct we're gonna meet without I'm a Mexican to meet with them personally later today. And our son is handling. He did observe part of the shooting that occurred in front of Dollar General. And follow him this care is the individual certainly. Yes he did. They chased him around the building where he came up towards union road again which is where our officers encountered him. It's that. He was not know. Was it because of this it was. We we don't know whether the weapons were dropped or you know they took what we don't we don't have that we're we're this. Now. If he wants. Where he. We're still we're still going through the statements and in talking to the witnesses you know that there were numerous witnesses to interview CEO we have not it. That that I would say right now the picture is becoming more clear but I can't definitively say. You know with a 100% accuracy so I wanna avoid at this time let up a picture is coming in to play. Again that's that's part of the overall picture so we're we're still in the process again got to remember we're dealing with someone who. It is not cooperating with a us. We have witnesses you know who we're still. You know just receive treatment and I've been released that no primary witness is that we haven't yet been able to interviews so there's still again the picture becoming more clear. But I really don't want to go that far just yet. If he broke out. There was definitely you know he definitely arrived in motor vehicle he had not done their very long and you know and came out firing so. He did was not there for a significant period of time there were. We know that there was some sort of conflict with a customer we're still getting all the details with that so. There's a lot out there. And we're just trying to verify the accuracy. Of at all at this time which is not always the easiest thing to deal you do that customer we we do not know that yet. Yes we believe he rug by himself there's no indication that anyone else was involved. It. I he was yet he did he'd he was inside the store one point. We're eight teams 800 feet deep and flat on her cover that he'd like a lot of concern is that and how much. It. That that's a lot. There's an there's no question. I said yesterday we were. It. It's a miracle that that I'm not up here Rima. And who's deceased. This was just. Incredible account owner and it now banned for these private citizens did not ban for disease rapid response. Our officers there's no telling where this would go on obviously you know this and it was heavily armed. We whipped he wore body armor. Then it's safe to say I assume that. His intent was to do significant. Harm. And fortunately we have great citizens we break police officers. And it in erupted that attack. Otherwise and certain things fair to assume. That things could go on. A lot worse. Said yesterday. These are the times where Libyans. And if you look at the actions of these private citizens. And you have to fight back. You have to fight back you have to you cannot wait to be rescue. These people were proactive. Face off rat don't recommend. That the engaging. With someone with a name ar fifteen rifle certainly don't recommend that but. Just incredible. Bravery and part of these individuals they were not going to be victims. They fought. And they took this guy out they poorest out to. And no words to describe. Their courage. In addition to two guys who were just as willing to run into the fire. And take this guy out and that's exactly what we did so proud of officers. We're grateful. To these citizens. And they will receive recognition from us. Very soon and let's hope to meet with them. Later today and thank them personally in this year you'll know who they are soon enough and once I get the okay well we'll give their names and captured one talk to those slopes. Here. It. Yeah it was just. You're bulletproof vest. Standard. Yeah we we did issue a picture of yesterday there are pieces. Well I mean you know you're it's it's illegal to. To be wearing that what's it. Scope of the charge. Actions. During the commission or crime wearing body armor his his crimes. We did we originally thought the may have an additional weapons in the car there weren't so we just had the two rifles at this time and what is it 850 additional lives rooms. You have when. They appear to be two to three. Yeah. That's where the ATF comes in and they do the background check on the weapons so we don't know how those weapons were obtained. I'm boat the ATF does assists us with that so we were in the process of you is how long that it's. It it's generally not a long. It is the registered owner obviously he's. But if they're from another source about it. History. I hit a shoulder laceration. So we don't know how that occurred I guess that was sewn up a couple of stitches. So was minor and again we don't know whether that incur. You know during civilian and known whether occurred when. Lieutenant Lipsky took down we just don't know he's you know it he's. A law and goes. We are extraordinarily pro active with that we were on. Light shooter drills almost annually we've run some of the largest rules and now. We began our active shooter program we were the first. It in the count right after column. In fact I was one W instructors at that time so we have spent on this war. Since column we've done live drills at our schools we don't live drills at the mall. In other locations we've coordinated with other agencies. So we we have been preparing. For an incident like this for a very very long time believe all that preparation. Certainly. Came into play it pay off yesterday including our dispatchers. Each situation is unique. Unity but you know we were trying to expecting unexpected. But we you know. We don't weigh our officers. Are trained our philosophy is and the attack. Regardless of the risk to you personally nor the when it. And that's what app. And there was no hesitation. We were armed we carry our fifteen rifles you saw the officer. You know immediately. Take that and he's running down the street with that so we're ready to go. And you know our philosophy is we're gonna take you well. And we didn't. Mean. The I think that is a testament to archery. They do not see this individual this individual never displayed a weapon to them. Had he I have no doubt. He would not be here today. They were never threatened with a weapon so they didn't react with a weapon. They went hands on I think that's incredible. Testament to our training and our discipline. They were not threatened. They didn't react with use of force I think a lot of people would have had no problem. They did what they had to do. And they performed extremely well disciplined. Discipline and training. Now. FF. That it's I'm sorry. We did go to an additional address because of the investigation. We really can there there was evidence recovered but I cannot. Released that because the integrity investigation. Right we I don't want to talk about any evidence was recovered. Yeah they'd. Incredible and and again and all of our training and all of our drills dispatch that we. We're Paul. How many times do we run. Active shooter scenarios with dispatch just. Now. We regularly regularly. They train. Again I as I spoke yesterday we had six dollar general stores in town so when someone calls opposite you know I got to issue we are somewhere shooting at the Dollar General. They know I mean they instinctively know that there's many locations in immediately tried to narrow it down. Because obviously the callers is panic gain in. You know you know not giving out. Gonna be is is forthcoming with the information. Because they're under extreme amount of stress and for the dispatchers. To be able. Two sort through that information narrow down the location. And get our cars going in the right direction. Once again. They're prepared they're well trained and they performed extremely well under stress. It. I don't I don't believe so that the there are witnesses at the scene were pointing in the direction of the individual lieutenant Lipsky. Took down so I think. We pretty much knew what was. Lieutenant and yeah there was little doubt. UNG two. I that was what Seneca a that was that this was and senate cut and yet they went into. Their electoral procedures immediately Internet talk to them. Aren't. You mentioned they assured he kind of leverage what. This gentleman be facing under state that. Fortunately. I brought lieutenant to race here who is an expert and the New York say fact because I am certainly not. So. Lieutenant di Ed in a thousand words or less did you. I just received some information that the weapon used appears to be a pumping action. Rifle vs some automatic which would change its status and in your state safe checked it was just discovered buyer earlier personnel. On I can see that looking at the weapon in the car. It appears to be seated compliant however there was a vertical for grip or aside drip attached to it. Which would mean data in violation of your states expects to possessed. There's always certain always so we features that a rifle an elf. Such as bayonet bugs less oppressors things like that they would make a violation of state action. That's that's what the we that you are the research that that we're doing now with the ATF is is determining. You know how he came. To to be in possession of these weapons that still. I'm going where restraint figure that out you get your school or not. At first it first glance they both appear to be safe Vietnam compliance however the one being used just to forms of pumping action weapons of some automatic. So that would change its status as a seat it violation regret after what the research take a look at the weapons and research sections of World War II hundred fire. It appears to be so this point. Well it it operates like a puppy actually shocked on the apparently if the front end of a weapon. Is what Jack's hand in searched the next round magazine. I'm I had to be purchased like. Key. Hits in four. Years. I doubt would have it's probably. From the roadside. Q. The dollar general store that to the front entrance is probably like 3400 feet. And I would estimate Tony maybe a hundred yards down. 200 yards down from the the actual store. Yes yes I'm union. Traffic offenses mostly. I believe we may have had a domestic. It's involving him as well you know criminal charges. Was it. Story. You know it. Right now. Because the motive is so difficult and again you know he is not cooperating so trying to figure out. What. The intent was is up but again you know once from. Outfitted the way he was. It's safe to assume that he was in time and doing some damage and in taking lives so. Again the motive is it's very difficult. To to establish rate. Now I know the department policy not. Domestic situation that mom no. His wife and deeper. We're going more separation. Sent domestic incident where workers was that reason. I can't beat because of the nature of the investigation we don't want to jeopardize the integrity and we're still trying to put as I said. The picture is becoming more clear. But for me to confirm. A detail like that right now. Would be imprudent for me to do that so I'm I'm refrain from doing that now was there anything you pack that you were aware of preventing. Probably laughing. That's part of the ongoing investigation. And again last night lot of witnesses to tie two that's that's first. The weapon as is next and you know so yeah all that is going to be looked into the early. The officers. Less than four minutes from the time call was received that's our. Closest estimation. We get. There's let that goes into that I won't go into it but we looked it looks like we were there within four cup performance of the call being received. Lieutenant will you speak how long did it take from the time you've got dancing to the takedown. I mean just a matter second. Bershard. I mentioned yesterday. Dispatchers confusion. Six dollars and there's other stores in town as the department looked at ways to improving communication. All part of all part of of you know when you debrief these things later you know youth you have these unanticipated. Circumstances. And quite frankly that's something we never thought of before. And but the dispatcher. Was ready. And the dispatcher was prepared and didn't panic didn't become confused and you know figure it out you know he adapts you overcome. You're always going to be thrown a curveball. And you don't know what that's going to be but. She that are out our partners do you think your area businesses. And hard to say hard to say. Clearly the guys who intervened to. Worked at a establishment clause but were ready. I don't know how prepared they were but but they were ready. Certainly corporate America companies you know are are taking into this into account now in developing safety plans we. Gallery mall for instance runs annual drills lockdown drills for the store type of thing but. I think it's the responsibility of anyone who owns a business anyone's got employees I'm from essar the public whiners tell that to be prepared. Again sadly these these are the times we live and preparation. Is key. And yet you have to protect your employees you have to protect your customers. Is it easily. I you can hunt with 222 caliber certain with the more all as long as the caliber is legal for the inner lining there's really no other law about. The brand weapon using the and it's better. The clips where I was in violation of I made it appears that the magazine that was in the rifle actually use would be in violation of the C picked as I capacity. Ammunition device. The magazines there with the other weapons don't appear to be so at this time and you elaborate home many. Casey knows. Let's hold off because he. I. Beverly that your it appears to have about the ones in the car were all turned around. All of us magazine's. But the the one there was used. Appearances. In the appears to at least be you know be in violation be more than ten rounds. She just. News. They're different reports that some shots were fired into the air but there were certainly you know the front of the building was bullet riddled the windows were shot out. We know vehicle windows were shut out it was part close by so. He was it was spray around answers the question is essentially shut them. And our pity. Us. That I'd. I don't know. I don't know those are you know those that will come from the statements that we get from witnesses later and again we have to. Protect the integrity of the investigation so we that he did make statements we wouldn't. We wouldn't report most of the time. Slot that we see you. See what is going here. You heard the radio there your office or use news. Yeah music behind the desk which is precinct pleased to be. But. You know I mean when when something like this happens you know it is just you just taken gear into this for thirty years so. You know we've we've all seen everyone up here it had been part of critical incidents throughout their careers so. Did you just go on auto pilot and you know one thing again you know. How many people are hurt and you know I'm worried about. My officers responding in getting their safely and being okay. But as I'm going there. I know. Our guys are gonna handle. And I know they're gonna handle well in and they did so I never concerned myself with that. These officers are incredible work mr. to a police report. And we've demonstrated time and again. And now yesterday was was. The rule that the exception. So yeah what goes through my head is. I hope everybody's okay. And they're gonna get the job done and they did. Now let's go right down the line guys. Don't start Liu who can speak out about. I didn't. And people just need. Ally. Peace has. It's and keep your important. Lieutenant Thomas and your race GE RA CE. Kevin Michael is sprint IS. PR. Me and DT. Shirts. BR. A and DT. I. I'm just emailed me saying it England not there aren't here any. Yeah that is. We've kind of confirmed that that he had only recently. Then staying there that he's the former resident of buffalo. And just recently. Had been staying there with family so yeah he's not a long time resident there at all. Oh yeah we're not gonna yet reassembling the avoid that witnesses and such.