Canyon County

Police release names of Caldwell officers who shot armed break-in suspect

This house at the corner of Marshall Avenue and West Elm Street in Caldwell was the scene of an officer-involved shooting that injured a Parma man Friday, Nov. 11.
This house at the corner of Marshall Avenue and West Elm Street in Caldwell was the scene of an officer-involved shooting that injured a Parma man Friday, Nov. 11. krodine@idahostatesman.com

Two Caldwell officers shot at James Stell around noon Friday, and one of them fired less lethal beanbag rounds, the Nampa Police Department, which is leading a task force investigation into the shooting, announced late Thursday afternoon.

Witnesses who watched the confrontation from across the street said Stell, 24, repeatedly made statements that indicated he wanted officers to kill him.

The two patrol officers who opened fire are Specialist Jared Hoeksema, who has five years of experience, and Cpl. Adam Matthews, who has 10 years experience, Nampa police report. One fired beanbag rounds, and the other fired a a rifle, according to a news release. Investigators have not disclosed which officer fired which weapon or how many times Stell was shot.

The Parma man was treated and released at a local hospital Friday, then transferred to the Ada County Jail on a probation violation charge that evening. Stell was holding a handgun when he was shot, according to the news release, but police have not said whether he was pointing it at officers. No officers were injured.

Investigators are still interviewing witnesses and have not yet forwarded recommendations to prosecutors about what charges may be filed against Stell in connection with Friday’s events, NPD Lt. Eric Skoglund said Thursday.

Officers had been searching a Southwest Caldwell neighborhood since 5:30 a.m. Friday, when a resident in the 600 block of West Hazel Street reported an attempted break-in at a neighbor’s house. Hours later and one-third of a mile away, the suspect walked into a home on the corner of Marshall Avenue and West Elm Street and was confronted by a man who told him to leave, and then alerted officers to his whereabouts, the 19-year-old’s mother said.

Police later found Stell hiding behind that house and tried to negotiate with him, police and witnesses said. Several witnesses told the Statesman they heard five or six gunshots.

The Critical Incident Task Force into the incident is continuing, with Nampa police as the lead agency.

The Caldwell shooting was the second of three officer-involved shootings within 21 hours last week. In the first, Kuna officers of the Ada County Sheriff’s Office shot 72-year-old Edgar Hafen after he reportedly pointed a gun at them from his car Thursday evening. And on Friday afternoon, a shootout in a Boise Bench neighborhood killed suspect Marco Romero and injured two Boise officers and a police dog. The dog died Wednesday, and one of the officers remains in critical condition.

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