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West Valley police station lobby reopens, investigation into shooting continues

WEST VALLEY CITY — The West Valley Police Department front lobby reopened Tuesday, a little more than 24 hours after police shot an armed man inside.

The lobby inside the main public entrance of the police department opened at noon. Bullet holes could still be seen in the glass, and police said it would take a couple of days for the replacement windows to arrive.

Just before 8:30 a.m. Monday, police say James Ramsey Kammeyer, 39, walked into the front lobby of the police station, 3575 S. Market St. (2790 West), and asked the officer working at the front desk to come out from behind his secure glass enclosure to talk to him.

The officer agreed and was just about to step out into the public area of the lobby when he noticed Kammeyer was keeping his hands in his jacket pockets, according to a Salt Lake County Jail booking report.

The officer asked the man to remove his hands from his pockets. That's when Kammeyer turned toward him and displayed a gun, according to the report. The officer called for backup and stayed in the enclosed area.

Several officers came from the upper floors of the building. One officer came into the lobby from the staircase, saw Kammeyer pointing a gun at two front lobby employees, and fired several rounds, striking Kammeyer twice in the arm from about 15 to 20 feet away.

Police had not commented as of Tuesday whether Kammeyer fired his weapon at any point during the confrontation. No officers or civilians were injured.

Kammeyer was treated at a local hospital and later booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of attempted murder, aggravated assault, possession of a weapon by a restricted person, aggravated burglary and threats against life or property.

Several questions remained Tuesday, namely Kammeyer's motivation and where he was able to get a firearm, if it was indeed a real gun.

In December, police were called to Kammeyer's residence on a report he had cut his wrists and proclaimed that he wanted to die from suicide by cop. Kammeyer, a registered sex offender, told police he was upset that his wife was taking his children away from him.

West Valley police could not say whether Monday's incident was an attempt by Kammeyer to goad officers into shooting and killing him.

Kammeyer was arrested by West Valley police in 1998. He pleaded guilty to sex abuse of a child, a second-degree felony, in 1999.

Kammeyer received a suspended prison sentence and was placed on probation, which he successfully completed in 2004. As part of his sentence, he also was ordered to undergo sex offender treatment and register as a sex offender.

At that time, people placed on the sex offender registry for that type of crime were placed on the sex offender registry for 10 years. Today, they would be on the registry for life. Prior to Monday, Kammeyer was scheduled to be taken off the list in January 2014.

Police served search warrants on Kammeyer's house and vehicle Monday. They have not said yet what, if anything, was found.

West Valley police also Tuesday issued a short statement regarding the shooting, saying that the investigation was still "active and ongoing" and thanked the public for their patience.


Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam