Casper police shot and killed a man the department says was fleeing a traffic stop with an officer still inside the vehicle early Thursday on Interstate 25.
The Natrona County Coroner’s Office confirmed Thursday that the person killed was 42-year-old Casper resident Thomas Joseph Roeber.
The shooting happened shortly before 4 a.m. when officers stopped a vehicle in the area of East H and North Elm streets in Casper, according to a police statement. Two officers approached the vehicle, which had two people inside.
At some point during the encounter, the driver tried to get out of the car. Roeber, meanwhile, moved from the passenger side into the driver’s seat and tried to flee the scene, police said.
One of the officers tried to stop the fleeing vehicle, but Roeber reportedly drove quickly from the scene with the officer inside, according to police. The other officer was occupied with the second person from the vehicle.
The vehicle drove onto I-25 and into oncoming traffic. At some point, the officer shot Roeber, then stopped the vehicle on the side of the road, according to the police statement.
Police did not say how long the officer was in the car before shooting.
Roeber was pronounced dead at Wyoming Medical Center. The coroner’s office said his family had been notified as of noon Thursday, and an autopsy was set to take place Friday.