State police chief: Trooper shot by suspect 'displayed a great deal of courage'

An Oregon State Police trooper was shot while investigating a possible stolen car Tuesday. The trooper is expected to survive. A person of interest is in custody. (SBG)

CRESWELL, Ore. - Oregon State Police said a Springfield-based trooper's "ballistic vest most likely saved his life as he only received minor injuries" in a shooting Tuesday.

Investigators said Senior Trooper Gerald Ellis stopped a stolen car around 1:20 p.m. near Highway 99 at England Road, south of Creswell.

Ellis is a Senior Trooper assigned to the Springfield Area Command Patrol Division. He has been with Oregon State Police for 8 years.

"After a brief encounter with the suspect at the stolen vehicle, our trooper was shot. Our trooper did return fire. We do not believe that the suspect was hit," Lt. Steve Mitchell said Tuesday. "Our trooper sustained non-life threatening injuries."

Investigators identified the suspect as 30-year-old Edward Paul Dungan of Creswell. He was booked into the Lane County Jail on charges of Attempted Aggravated Murder, Unlawful Use of a Weapon, and Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle.

He was arraigned Wednesday on those and additional charges of Attempting to Elude Police and Reckless Driving.

State police did not identify the trooper by name Wednesday. But charging documents named Ellis as the victim in the case, and the sheriff's office confirmed Ellis was the trooper shot on Tuesday.

"We would like to thank all those who have offered their kind words and support through this traumatic incident," state police said in a Facebook post. "We will update you as we can, but this is an active investigation being led by the Lane County Sheriff's Office."

And under state law, an interagency team will review the trooper's use of deadly force and forward its findings to the district attorney for review.

The state police superintendent issued a statement to all 1,300 of the agency's employees about the shooting.

“It never ceases to amaze me when I hear the big blue machine rolling to support one of our own," Travis Hampton told state police employees. "From fellow troopers- to dispatch- to SWAT- to the immediate care system…the OSP universe centered on welfare of one brave young man- as it should have. I’m very proud of you all, especially our trooper involved in the event. He displayed a great deal of courage and acted in the best traditions of the Oregon State Police.”

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