DELAWARE STATE POLICE BEAT: Paraplegic suspect went for his gun as Troopers entered with a search warrant; killed by Trooper as they struggled for the weapon

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DELAWARE STATE POLICE BEAT: Paraplegic suspect went for his gun as Troopers entered with a search warrant; killed by Trooper as they struggled for the weapon

HARBESON, DEL. – The Delaware State Police report that they are continuing to investigate a scene where a suspect in a police raid was killed as he and two troopers fought for control of a gun in the possession of the unidentified suspect.

The incident occurred at approximately 6:07 a.m., Tuesday, August 28, 2018, when a search warrant was executed by the Delaware State Police at a residence on Harbeson Road.   Troopers entered the residence and made contact with a 50-year-old male paraplegic resident who was lying in bed.  While Troopers were in the residence, the suspect proceeded to obtain a handgun that was in arms reach.  A struggle over the weapon ensued which led to two Troopers discharging their divisionally issued handgun.

The suspect sustained gunshot wounds and was transported to a local area hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. Identification is pending next of kin notification.  One of the Troopers involved in the shooting has been employed with the Delaware State Police for 8 years and the other for 7 years. One Trooper sustained minor injuries as a result of this incident.  Both Troopers have been placed on administrative leave as per Divisional Policy.

Andrew-A.-Ayers search warrants drug arrest Aug. 29, 2018, Delaware State Police.
Andrew-A.-Knox drug arrest via search warrant on Aug. 29, 2018, Delaware State Police.
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Harbeson/Milton- The Delaware State Police have arrested two suspects in connection with illegal drug activity.

On Tuesday, August 28, 2018, members of the Sussex County Drug Unit and Governor’s Task Force concluded a three-week long drug investigation.  The Delaware State Police executed two search warrants at residences in the 22000 block of Harbeson Road and 28000 block of West Springside Drive.

Upon the execution of the search warrant at the residence on Harbeson Road, three subjects were located inside.  Two of the subjects were taken into custody without incident.  While in the process of the third subject, 50-year-old Robert Knox, being taken into custody, he proceeded to obtain a handgun that was in arms reach.  A struggle over the weapon ensued which led to two Troopers discharging their divisionally issued handgun.

Robert Knox was transported to the Beebe Medical Center where he succumbed to his injuries.

The following items were seized from the residence:

  • a loaded .22 caliber handgun, Ruger 9mm, Smith and Wesson 9mm, US Revolver .38 caliber handgun
  • 815.82 grams of powder cocaine
  • 51.93 grams of crack cocaine
  • 1196.95 grams of marijuana
  • 68.25 grams of crystal methamphetamine
  • over $23,000 in suspected drug proceeds
  • various prescription pills
  • various ammunition

Andrew Knox, 82, was taken into custody and transported back to Troop 4 where  he was charged with Possession of a Firearm or Ammunition by a Person Prohibited Prior Violent Crime or Felony and Maintaining a Drug Property.  He was arraigned before the Justice of the Peace Court 2 and released on $13,000.00 unsecured bond.

The other occupant in the residence has not been charged at this time.

Upon the execution of the search warrant at the residence on West Springside Drive, one subject was located inside and taken into custody without incident.

The following items were seized from the residence:

  • over $24,000 in suspected drug proceeds
  •  24.99 grams of crack cocaine
  • 395.66 grams of marijuana
  • a loaded Smith and Wesson .44 Magnum

Andrew Ayers, 54, was taken into custody and transported back to Troop 4 where he was charged with the following:

  • Manufactures, delivers, or possesses with intent to deliver a controlled
    substance in a Tier 4 quantity
  • Possession of a Firearm/Destructive Weapon If Previously
    Convicted of A Violent Felony
  • Possession of a Firearm or Ammunition by a Person
    Prohibited Prior Violent Crime or Felony
  • Possesses with intent to manufacture, deliver a controlled substance
  • Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

Ayers was arraigned before the Justice of the Peace Court 2 and committed to the Sussex Correctional Institution on $100,200.00 secured bond.

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