MISSOULA – Authorities have confirmed with MTN News that an incident that has closed US Highway 93 North in the Evaro area is an officer-involved shooting.
Missoula County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Brenda Bassett has told MTN News that an officer was involved in the shooting. Details surrounding what occurred have not yet been released.
- Highway 93 shut down after shots fired, police search for shooting suspect
- Shooting incidents prompt St. Patrick Hospital lockdown
Bassett had previously confirmed with MTN News that the shooting on US Highway 93 North is believed to be connected to an earlier shooting Thursday evening near the StoneCreek Lodge on Airway Boulevard.
Watch the video of the first news conference about the shooting below:
Missoula Police Department Sgt. Travis Welsh tells MTN News that they are investigating two separate shooting incidents, but they are believed to be connected.
Sgt. Welsh says that shortly before 11 p.m. on Thursday, officers were called to Expressway and Tanager Way for reports of gunfire.
Police arrived at the scene to find two people with gunshot wounds — along with a third person who was not injured that called 911. Both victims were transported to the hospital. The extent of their injuries is unknown at this time.
The suspect fled the scene in a white SUV, possibly a Chevy Suburban.
Less than an hour later, law enforcement responded to Highway 93 North for reports of shots fired in the Evaro area. One person was taken to a Missoula hospital in that incident.
Bassett says the suspect in the earlier incident on Expressway is believed to be connected to the shooting in the Evaro area.
Both directions of US Highway 93 North are shut down between Grooms and Waldo while police search for a suspect.
Lake County Sheriff Don Bell told MTN News that deputies are also looking for the suspect vehicle in the Arlee area.
Additionally, Lake County deputies are assisting the Montana Highway Patrol and Missoula County law enforcement agencies with the search.
Police are advising residents in the Evaro area and near the Missoula International Airport on to stay inside their homes and lock their doors.
Trains have been halted in the area of the search area, according to Montana Rail Link.
We have a reporter on scene and will update you with more information as it becomes available.
-information from Mahkia Clark included in this report.