Authorities are investigating an officer-involved shooting and searching for a woman and child after a Thursday-morning incident along the Little Blue Trace trail in eastern Independence.
A brief chase that followed the shooting ended when the suspect vehicle ran a red light and collided with an ambulance at the intersection of Jackson Drive and R.D. Mize Road, a couple blocks from the initial incident.
The suspect, who was shot in the leg, and the Jackson County Sheriff's deputy were injured during a struggle near the Little Blue Trace trail access at Necessary Road near R.D. Mize Road. The sheriff's deputy was not hit with a bullet, sheriff's spokesperson Sgt. John Payne said, and the suspect was arrested after the two-vehicle collision.
Payne said he did not know how serious the injuries are. The ambulance involved in the collision did not have a patient inside.
Sheriff's deputies have been patrolling the area along the trail, which is maintained by Jackson County Parks and Recreation, following recent string of vehicle break-ins. Shortly before 9 a.m., Payne said, a deputy noticed some suspicious activity in a van at the Necessary Road trail access.
When the deputy pulled over the vehicle, a struggle ensued between the deputy and male suspect, and a 28-year-old woman and 4-year-old child who had been in the van fled the scene. Officers from multiple police and sheriff agencies are assisting in the search for them, Payne said, including K-9 units that had gathered for a regional training day.
Westbound traffic on R.D. Mize Road and southbound traffic on Jackson Drive had to turn around while officers investigated and cleaned up the crash scene.