OSBI investigates case of shoplifting turned deadly in Ponca City

PONCA CITY, Okla. — A case of shoplifting turned deadly in Ponca City.

Police say suspect stole alcohol and a car to get away from officers. Now, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation is looking into the incident.

OSBI said the suspect was shot and killed by an officer in Ponca City after the suspect stole alcohol from a store.

“Gentleman comes in, said it was hot, and he walked to stand inside the cooler,” said Kyla Davis, the store manager.

Davis got a good look at the suspect. She said he stole two cans of alcohol from her liquor store.

“It was crazy, just thinking like, what if I had confronted him?” Davis said.

She had no idea he was armed. She said he seemed very mild-mannered until she saw police approach his car in the parking lot.

“That old voice in my head was telling me not to, and so I just backed off and waited until he turned the corner,” she said.

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OSBI said police found him walking in the middle of the street about a mile away from the liquor store and they saw he had a gun. Then, the suspect spotted an oncoming driver.

“Shows her the weapon, he carjacks her, she’s safely able to get away from him, and he takes off with her vehicle,” said Brook Arbeitman with OSBI.

Police chased him and ended up behind the strip mall where he stole the alcohol. Investigators say he ditched the stolen car in a field and then ran towards the woods.

“He makes a move where it looks like he has a weapon, and then shots are fired,” Arbeitman said.

Investigators say a weapon was found in the woods. For now, the police don’t know if the suspect was intoxicated in any way.

“The medical examiner will work to determine the cause and manner of death, and as part of that, he’ll determine if any drugs or alcohol were in his system,” Arbeitman said.

Ponca City police said they have no comment because the OSBI is investigating.