Subject shot during Multi-Agency Task Force investigation near UNR
Around 4 pm on November 5, 2014, officers with the Reno Police Department and the University of Nevada Reno Police responded to the area of College and Terrace Drive on the report of gun shots being fired. When Officers arrived, it was discovered that law enforcement officers from a multi-agency task force were in the area conducting a traffic stop on a vehicle. At one point during the stop, an incident occurred and shots were fired.
A single occupant of the vehicle was struck by bullets and was pronounced deceased at the scene. The deceased subject’s identity is unknown at this time pending further investigation.
Preliminary findings from this investigation show that the regional team involved in this shooting, the All Threats All Crime (ATAC) team, included members from the Washoe County Sheriff’s Department, the Sparks Police Department, the Nevada Department of Public Safety – Parole & Probation, and the United States Marshals Service (USMS) led fugitive task force. The suspect involved in this Officer-Involved Shooting (OIS) has been identified as Robert William Hampton III (DOB: 1/31/81). Mr. Hampton has an extensive criminal history to include time in prison in Kentucky and prior arrests for carrying a concealed weapon, obstructing and resisting, and, during the time of this incident, he had three active felony warrants for his arrest.
A uniformed Washoe County Sheriff’s K9 deputy conducted a traffic stop on Mr. Hampton in the area of College and Terrace Drives. During the traffic stop, the K9 deputy and members of the USMS fugitive task force attempted to arrest Mr. Hampton for his felony warrants. Mr. Hampton became uncooperative, ignored the commands of the deputy, backed his vehicle a short distance and accelerated forward striking the deputy in the hand and the leg with his vehicle, causing minor injuries to the K9 deputy.
Fearing for his safety, the K9 deputy discharged his firearm into the vehicle, striking and killing Mr. Hampton. The vehicle continued forward, striking a nearby parked vehicle, causing that vehicle to be pushed up on to the sidewalk. Several witnesses on scene were interviewed and substantiated the events surrounding this incident. Due to the nature of the incident, surrounding law enforcement agencies and medical personnel responded to the scene. Mr. Hampton was pronounced deceased on scene.
The K9 deputy involved in the shooting has thirteen years of law enforcement experience and he has been placed on routine administrative leave, pending the outcome of this ongoing investigation. This is a routine and normal occurrence in any case where an officer/deputy has discharged a firearm and one or more bullets strike a human being. The same practice is followed in virtually every jurisdiction in the United States.
Pursuant to the Washoe County OIS Protocol, the OIS investigation will be conducted by multiple local law enforcement agencies (RPD, SPD and WCSO), with the Reno Police Department being the lead agency and media contact.
When the preliminary investigation is complete it will be submitted to the District Attorney’s Office for an initial determination as to whether the shooting was justified under Nevada Law. If the shooting initially appears justified, the officers/deputies can be returned to duty, pending the completion of the OIS investigation and a final determination as to justification by the District Attorney’s Office.
In order to ensure the fairness and integrity of the investigation no further media comment will be made by police personnel. Upon completion of the preliminary review further information will be released, as well as a final report, after the investigation and final review are complete, which may take a few months to finalize.