KAUKUANA, Wis. (WBAY)- Fox Valley Metro Police Chief Daniel Meister is asking for patience during the investigation of Tuesday's fatal shooting of a chase suspect by a Fox Valley Metro officer.
Police investigate an overnight incident near Hwy. 55 and County OO in Kaukauna early in the morning hours of Tuesday, September 2, 2019. (WBAY photo)
In an open letter posted on Facebook, he writes, "The Fox Valley Metro Police Department understands that our authority comes from the public's trust in us to carry out our duties in a lawful and professional manner. In order to maintain that trust, we believe that transparency is one component that is critical to our continued partnership with the communities we serve."
He goes on to say, "There is also a balance between transparency and maintaining the integrity of an investigation... [The Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation] is coordinating a very large response to this incident and will investigate to determine the facts surrounding this incident.
"The investigation may take several weeks to conclude and will then be shared with the Outagamie County District Attorney for review. Little or not information may be released during the ongoing investigation so that the facts are not intertwined with speculation or innuendo.
"Eventually, a more detailed disclosure will be made public so that the public can be assured that a thorough and appropriate investigation was conducted and that all available facts have been presented."
A police chase through several Fox Valley communities ended when the suspect crashed and was shot by a Fox Valley Metro police officer early Tuesday morning.
The suspect later died from their injuries. The suspect's name was not released. Police will not say if the person is a male or female.
Police did not identify the officer who fired on the suspect.
It started at about 1:15 a.m. Fox Valley Metro Police were involved in what they described as a "multi-jurisdictional vehicle pursuit."
"There was a vehicle that was reported for erratic driving behavior," Lt. Mark Wery, Fox Valley Metro Police Department, said. "That vehicle left the city of Appleton, traveled north along Interstate 41, where it exited into the village of Little Chute. That vehicle then traveled east along County Highway OO into the city of Kaukauna."
The vehicle crashed in the intersection of County Highway OO and State Highway 55 in Kaukauna.
Police attempted to take the suspect into custody. That's when an officer opened fire on the driver.
"During that process a threat posed itself and in that process an officer from our agency fired their firearm at the suspect, striking them," Lt. Wery said, without going into details about the threat.
Wery says the suspect was hit in the "upper body." They were taken to a local trauma center where they died.
Highway 55 was closed at County OO for several hours. It reopened to traffic at about 10:38 a.m. Wery said the heavy rain Tuesday morning made the start of the investigation more difficult.
The road is a school bus route. Kaukauna Police made arrangements with local school bus companies to avoid the area during the morning commute.
"We understand it's the first day of school and this is a bus route for the Kaukauna Area School District. The Kaukauna Police Department has been in contact with the local bus lines to make alternative arrangements for students heading off to the first day of school," says Werey.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation is assisting police with the investigation, which is routine under state law.
Action 2 News will continue to update this story as we get new information.
There's a heavy police presence in Kaukauna as officers investigate an overnight incident near Highway 55 and County OO, also called Delanglade Street and Hyland Avenue.
Police have not said what happened, but a neighbor who lives in the area says she saw police, then heard guns shots about 1:20 Tuesday morning.
Highway 55 is closed southeast of I-41. The State Patrol says to use I-41 and County J as a detour.
Watch Action 2 News This Morning for live reports from the scene.