UPDATE: Butte shooting suspect arrested in Bozeman
BUTTE, Mont. - UPDATE: Butte-Silver Bow Sheriff Ed Lester confirmed Friday night that Luke Andrew Lapinski, wanted in connection with a Butte shooting, was arrested without incident in Bozeman.
The following is a press release from the Gallatin County Sheriff's Office:
On August 1, 2014, at about 9:00 PM, the suspect in a shooting that occurred the previous night in Butte was taken into custody in Gallatin County. This operation was put together on very short notice and involved multiple agencies. Its success was due to the cooperation between the Gallatin County Sheriff's Office, Montana Highway Patrol, Bozeman Police Department, FBI, and ICE.
An arrest warrant had been issued for Luke Lapinski, who was considered to be armed and dangerous. Information had been passed on from investigating agencies that Lapinski was likely in the Bozeman area. Further information was developed which led to a specific residence on Hidden Valley Road. In addition a citizen had spotted a vehicle matching Lapinski's vehicle in the Valley Grove subdivision a short distance from Hidden Valley Road. A perimeter was established to contain the area, and the joint Bozeman PD / Sheriff's Office Special Response Team (SRT) was called out. As the Special Response Team was beginning to deploy, Lapinski was observed leaving the residence in the Corvette. Deputies and MHP Troopers on the inner perimeter stopped the Corvette a short distance from the residence, and Lapinski was taken into custody without incident.
Investigators in Butte were notified of the apprehension, and the investigation will be turned over to their agency. Lapinski is being held in the Gallatin County Detention Center and will have an initial court appearance in Gallatin County before being sent back to Butte.
Authorities say Lapinski shot a Butte man early Friday morning. The incident took place at 1811 Porter Avenue, on the east end of town, shortly after midnight. Lapinski allegedly fired two shots from his Corvette. One shot hit the victim in the leg. "Shortly after midnight, our department received a call of some gunshots being fired in the 1800-block of Porter Avenue." Sheriff Ed Lester said police were on scene in just three minutes. No one was at the home when they arrived, but they found two gun shell casings in the street. "Two males were involved in the shooting," said Lester. The 38-year-old victim was shot in the left calf. Even after being shot, the man drove himself to St. James Hospital where police met him as he arrived. The second man fled the scene in what officials believe was a 2013 silver Chevrolet Corvette. "The suspect in the shooting is a Luke Andrew Lapinski, age 37," said Lester. Lester said the problem started when the two began arguing in the street. "The individual in the Corvette fired two rounds from a handgun out the driver's side window," said Lester. We knocked on doors to talk to neighbors about the incident. Folks we spoke to declined to go on camera, but told us they've seen many cars go in and out of that driveway and were scared when they learned someone had been shot. Butte-Silver Bow law enforcement officials also worked with the federal government and regional agencies to track down Lapinski.