Wichita police shoot possible assailant in domestic incident

WICHITA – A fourteen year-old Wichita boy is dead and a family member recovering in custody after an armed standoff in a Wichita neighborhood early Monday.

A statement form the Kansas Bureau of Investigation said the Wichita Police Department (WPD) and the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) requested the KBI conduct an investigation at around 2 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 29. KBI agents responded to investigate. 

At around 6:20 p.m., the statement said WPD officers arrived at an apartment at 8405 W. Central in Wichita, to check on 14-year-old Claude Hodges after his father called concerned for his welfare. When they arrived at the apartment they knocked and received no response. They observed a bullet hole in the apartment’s exterior wall and also found a fired bullet on the ground near the entrance.

WPD officers quickly obtained a key and entered the apartment. Upon entering they found a female subject, later identified as 43-year-old Kylee R. Hodges, of Wichita, holding a handgun. A shotgun was also nearby. Officers quickly withdrew from the apartment and notified negotiators.

Preliminary information indicates negotiators began talking with Hodges at around 8:20 p.m. A tactical team, comprised of both officers from the WPD and deputies from the SCSO, were called to the apartment at around 9:45 p.m. Discussions with Hodges continued for several hours in an effort to convince her to disarm and exit peacefully. At one point they convinced Hodges to come out of the apartment and leave her handgun on the ground outside, but she remained close to the gun. 

At around 1:40 a.m., Hodges quickly picked up the handgun again, and advanced toward officers while pointing the firearm in their direction. Two SWAT officers from the WPD each fired one shot toward Hodges, striking her. 

Medical aid was rendered, and EMS transported Hodges to a local hospital. No law enforcement officers were injured in the incident. Once officers reentered the apartment, they discovered Claude Hodges in a bedroom deceased from a gunshot wound. Kylee Hodges underwent surgery and is expected to survive her injuries.

The WPD will continue to investigate the homicide of 14-year-old Claude Hodges. The KBI will conduct a thorough and independent investigation into the officer-involved shooting. Once completed the findings will be presented to the Sedgwick County District Attorney for review. A KBI official said the investigation is ongoing.

Dane Hicks is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism and the United States Marine Corps Officer Candidate School at Quantico, VA. He is the author of novels "The Skinning Tree" and "A Whisper For Help." As publisher of the Anderson County Review in Garnett, KS., he is a recipient of the Kansas Press Association's Boyd Community Service Award as well as more than 60 awards for excellence in news, editorial and photography.