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Derek Petersen, KSL TV

Police identify man involved in SLC shooting that left officer injured

By Linda Williams and Jacob Klopfenstein, KSL.com | Updated - Feb. 11, 2020 at 2:24 p.m. | Posted - Feb. 10, 2020 at 6:23 a.m.


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SALT LAKE CITY — A police officer was shot and a woman was found dead after police responded to a domestic incident in downtown Salt Lake City early Monday morning, officials said.

Officers responded to a call of "unknown circumstances" at an apartment complex in the area of 125 South and 300 East about 3:30 a.m. Monday, according to Salt Lake City police detective Greg Wilking.

When officers arrived, they were not sure exactly what they were dealing with, and at some point, officers and a man exchanged gunfire outside the apartment unit, Wilking said.

An officer was shot in the lower body and was taken to a hospital in stable condition with injuries that are not life-threatening, Wilking said. The officer is in good spirits and is expected to recover, but it will be a long recovery, Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown said in a press conference.

The man then fled the scene and was later taken into custody near 200 South and 500 East, Wilking said. The man had a gunshot wound and was being treated Monday morning, according to Wilking.

He was identified Tuesday as Michael Tyson Nance, 30, according to Unified police. As of Tuesday afternoon he was still in the hospital and had not been booked into jail, police said.

Police entered the apartment building and found a woman deceased. She was identified Monday afternoon by Unified police as 34-year-old Natalie Thurber.

Her death is being investigated as a homicide, Wilking said. Investigators believe she died before officers engaged in gunfire. Further details about her death have not been released.

Nance is believed to be connected to both the homicide of the woman and the exchange of gunfire with officers, Wilking said.

Nance and Thurber were the only people in the apartment, Wilking said. They were in some sort of domestic relationship but were not married, according to Unified Police Sgt. Melody Gray.

Both the homicide investigation and officer-involved shooting investigation have been taken over by Unified Police Department to avoid a conflict of interest and because it will be a more seamless process for one agency to investigate the two incidents together, Gray said.

Two Salt Lake police officers have been placed on administrative leave per department protocol, according to Brown.

"I trust that in this situation, our officers had the training, the ability and the judgment to react and take care of this very dynamic and violent situation," Brown said. "I am proud of the women and men of this department and the work that they do daily. ... I am so thankful that our officer is expected to recover."

The officer who was shot has been on the force for about a year, Wilking added.

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall joined Brown at the press conference and spoke briefly on the incident.

"I will just express my saddened heart that I think the department and the community feels at the tragedy that happened earlier this morning, both for the woman who lost her life and for our officer, fortunately who will recover, but who was badly injured," she said.

At 9:30 a.m. Monday, investigators had received a search warrant for the apartment, which is on the first floor of the building, and were preparing to enter the apartment to investigate further, Gray said.

As police investigate the incident, 300 East is closed between 100 South and 200 South, Wilking said. Officers can escort people if they need to get through the area for business, but prefer that people avoid the area. Wilking added 200 South should be open to traffic.

Most of the people in the apartment complex were temporarily on lockdown, but officers were available to escort residents to and from their apartments, Wilking said. The apartment complex was not evacuated.

Contributing: Shara Park, Dan Rascon and Sean Moody, KSL TV; and Mary Richards, KSL NewsRadio

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