News / 

Garna Mejia, KSL TV, File

Report describes final moments before fatal shooting of Ogden officer Nathan Lyday

By Lauren Bennett, KSL.com | Updated - Jun. 3, 2020 at 8:36 p.m. | Posted - Jun. 3, 2020 at 5:35 p.m.



OGDEN — A report released by the Weber County Attorney’s Office Wednesday sheds light on the final moments leading up to the fatal shooting of 24-year-old Ogden City police officer Nathan Lyday.

Lyday was killed in the line of duty on May 28 when a man accused of abusing his wife shot him in the head, according to the report, which was prepared by Weber County Attorney Chris Allred.

The incident occurred after a woman called 911 and said her husband, John Coleman, had beaten her and threatened to kill her, the report says. She also said Coleman had drugs in the home and gave dispatchers the home’s address.

The call ended before more information could be gathered and two Ogden police officers responded to the residence, including Lyday. Allred’s report says body cameras captured the entire encounter. Lyday, the initial responding officer, stood on the front porch and spoke with Coleman through a glass screen door. Coleman was “uncooperative and confrontational” with officers, the report says.

Body camera footage “shows that both officers remained calm and professional with Coleman as they attempted to investigate the domestic violence call,” Allred wrote.

Coleman refused to open the door, and he later stepped further inside the home and closed the front door, the report says. As he did so, Lyday turned away from the door and spoke with the other officer about how to approach the situation. With Lyday’s back still turned, Coleman partially opened the front door and fired a rifle at Lyday through the storm door.

Related:

Lyday was holding a notebook and pen when the shots were fired and “had no opportunity to react when Coleman started firing,” Allred wrote in the report. Lyday was shot in the head and died instantly.

The other police officer on scene fired back at Coleman as he continued to fire the rifle out of the house toward the officer and police vehicles parked on the street, the report says. Two Adult Probation and Parole agents backed up the Ogden officer and returned fire as Coleman moved into a different room on the north end of the home and fired back at the probation agents.

One probation agent was hit by a bullet as he tried to rescue Lyday, who had collapsed at the bottom of the front steps. The shooting ceased after the exchange of gunfire, the report says, and the injured probation agent was dragged from the scene by a fellow agent and transported to a hospital where he was treated for hand and arm wounds.

More Ogden City police officers responded to the incident and approached the home with ballistic shields as a cover. They carried Lyday to medical personnel and he was transported to McKay-Dee Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

About 40 minutes later, SWAT teams entered the home and found Coleman dead in a northeast room of the home with a gunshot wound to the head. Allred’s report says Investigators determined he died in the gunfire exchange with officers.

The Weber County Force Investigation Team, as well as Homicide Task Force members, took over the scene and served search warrants on the home and surrounding area.

The county’s team is in charge of the investigation and will present its evidence to the county attorney’s office when it is completed.

The United States Honor Flag will travel from Orlando, Florida, to Salt Lake City where it will be met by Ogden City Police Chief Randy Watt and members of the Ogden Police Honor Guard and Traffic Unit.

The flag will be ceremoniously presented to the police chief who will then present it to Sgt. Jason Vanderwarf, Lyday’s patrol sergeant at the time of his death.

The flag will travel via police escort to Lindquist Mortuary in Ogden, 3408 Washington Blvd., where it will be presented to Lyday’s body which is under 24-hour Honor Guard watch.

At Lyday’s funeral on Saturday, the flag will accompany him at the service where it will be displayed alongside his casket. At the conclusion, the flag will be transported to the United States Honor Flag network where it will await its next destination.

A candlelight vigil will also be held Thursday evening to honor the fallen officer.

Related Stories

Lauren Bennett

KSL Weather Forecast