WICHITA, Kan. — The family of an 18-year-old killed last week by a sheriff’s deputy after authorities say he pointed a gun at the officer during a traffic stop says the driver’s “own actions ended his life too soon.”
Caleb Douglas’ family said in a statement Saturday that Douglas was “a caring, loving soul,” but that “his troubles were a concern.” The family said Douglas caused “the (Sedgwick County) deputy to fire his own weapon in self-defense.”
Authorities say the deputy spotted a possible impaired driver early Thursday in Wichita and stopped the vehicle. Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter said that when Douglas pointed a handgun at the deputy’s face after being asked to step out of his car, the deputy retreated before firing at the driver, who drove off before striking a nearby house. A loaded handgun was found in the vehicle, authorities said.
Douglas later died at a hospital. His funeral is scheduled for Wednesday.
Douglas’ family, in its statement, said it is cooperating with the investigation of Douglas’ death and has “the utmost confidence” in those taking part in that review.
Court records show that in June of last year, Douglas was accused of going into a detective’s unmarked patrol car and trying to steal the ticket book, KWCH reported. He completed a diversion program, and a judge dismissed his case nearly a year later.