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Thread: Ky. Firefighter Killed, Second Wounded in Shooting at Scene of Domestic

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    Ky. Firefighter Killed, Second Wounded in Shooting at Scene of Domestic

    Ky. Firefighter Killed, Second Wounded in Shooting at Scene of Domestic

    'Worst Nightmare': Domestic Dispute Call Turns to Tragedy



    LEX18.com - Lexington, KY WLEX
    Reprinted with Permission

    LEXINGTON, Ky -- A domestic-violence shooting that escalated into a six-hour standoff killed a firefighter, a Lexington woman, and wounded at least three others Friday at a home in rural southern Fayette County.

    Police finally arrested Pat Hutchinson, 45, at around 9:45 p.m.

    Lexington fire Major Greg Stapleton confirmed the death of Lt. Brenda Cowan, 40, a twelve-year veteran of the department. The other firefighter who was shot, Jim Sandford, was in stable condition Friday night, said Stapleton confirmed. A third firefighter, Mike Souder, suffered an apparent sprain and was treated and released.

    Hutchinson is also accused of murdering his wife, Fontaine, 60.

    A Lexington police officer also was injured in a car wreck traveling to the scene.

    "This is our worst nightmare," said Lexington fire chief Robert Hendricks.

    Cowan, was a Union County native and the sister of former UK basketball player Fred Cowan. She was the first African-American female firefighter in Lexington, and had been promoted to Lieutenant on Tuesday.

    "She was the top of the line, the best at everything she did," said Hendricks.

    During the standoff, neighbor Richard Parson told LEX 18 News that he had spoken by telephone to Hutchinson after the incident began. Parson said Hutchinson told him that he had "blown his wife's brains out." Parson also said Hutchinson is a delusional individual who believes people are clones.

    Hutchinson later told the Lexington Herald-Leader that he shot Fontaine and then the paramedics because he was staging a coup against human clones.

    "You're about to see armageddon," said Hutchinson, who spoke calmly about a vast conspiracy involving UFOs, alien clones and the CIA.

    "I started with my wife," he said. "I shot her in the head. ... She's got a radio sticking in her skull."

    The incident began at 3:30 p.m. An LEX 18 News crew arrived at the scene at 8645 Adams Lane near Exit 99 off I-75 as firefighters approached. LEX 18's Angelica St. John says that as the firefighters bent down to a woman lying on the ground in front of a home, shots rang out from the home. Later, the window of a police cruiser was blown out as it approached the house.

    Police say six firefighters on two crews initially responded to a domestic violence call. As shots rang out, two were hit by gunfire, and the other four were pinned until police arrived.

    Two helicopters landed on the interstate. I-75 South was blocked at the Clays Ferry exit and at Athens-Boonesboro Road, stalling traffic for miles.


    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...3&sectionId=39

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    Brenda Cowan

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    Lt. Brenda Cowan at her ********* ceremony just a week before Friday's tragic shooting.

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    Kentucky Firefighter Killed In Standoff "One of the Best"

    Kentucky Firefighter Killed In Standoff "One of the Best"

    Courtesy of WKYT


    The firefighter killed in the standoff, Lieutenant Brenda Cowan, was a 12-year veteran of the force. She was just promoted this week.

    WKYT's Valeria Cummings had met Cowan soon after she joined the Lexington Fire Department back in 1992.

    She made history then by becoming the first female African American to join the fire department, but said her goal was just to become one the guys.

    A sign hanging in the fire department says courage comes from a reserve of mind more powerful than outside circumstances--a true description of Lieutenant Brenda Cowan, who died doing the job she loved.

    Fire Chief Robert Hendricks, "She was an extremely hard worker. She followed the letter of the division and the law to the max. She was tough as nails and just the kind of person you want to have working with you."

    Hendricks says Cowan was a dedicated member of his department who just last week received the ranking of Lieutenant within the department.

    "She was very humble about it--didn't like the limelight focused on her."

    Cowan's minister, Rev. Richard Gaines, spent Friday evening counseling firefighters and remembering a woman he says left behind a legacy.

    "Just as she was a tremendous firefighter, she was also a tremendous asset to our church community. Brenda touched many lives in special ways and we are going to miss her a great deal. At this point, it's safe to say Brenda died doing what she loved."

    Brenda Cowan is the third Lexington firefighter to die in the line of duty. Funeral arrangements for Cowan are still pending.


    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=46&id=26161

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    Cowan, Brenda

    Age: 40
    Cause of Death: Struck By/Contact with Object
    Rank: Lieutenant
    Nature of Death: Internal Trauma
    Status: Career
    Emergency Duty: Yes

    Incident Date: 02/13/2004
    Duty Type: Non-Fire Emergencies
    Incident Time: 15:45
    Activity Type: Other
    Death Date: 02/13/2004
    Fixed Prop. Use: Residential

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Lexington Fire Department
    219 East Third Street
    Lexington , Kentucky 40508
    Chief: Robert G. Hendricks

    Initial Summary:
    Lt. Cowan was hit and killed by gunfire while responding to an emergency medical assistance call.

    Memorial Fund Info:
    In memory of Lt. Brenda Cowan, C/o Lexington Fire Department, 219 East Third Street, Lexington, KY 40508 Memorial Video: http://www.thatonecompany.com/memory/brenda.html


    http://www.usfa.fema.gov/application...eath_year=2004

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    Kentucky Man Arraigned In Death Of Firefighter

    Kentucky Man Arraigned In Death Of Firefighter


    LEX18.com - Lexington, KY WLEX

    The man accused of killing his wife and a Lexington firefighter last Friday was arraigned on two counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder Monday in Lexington District Court.

    A disheveled-looking Patrick Hutchinson, 45, appeared via video arraignment sporting a black eye and cuts on his face. His bail was set at 2 million dollars, and his next court appearance was scheduled for March 26. District Judge Kevin Horne also ordered Hutchinson to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

    Hutchinson is accused of killing his wife, Fontaine, and Lexington firefighter, Lt. Brenda Cowan, during a domestic dispute Friday. Hutchinson then held police at bay for six hours before surrendering.

    Close friends say Hutchinson has acted strangely for the past several years. They claim he rambled that "most of the human race was made up of clones." Others close to the family say he's quite a marksman, but never hunted animals. They say he would only practice target shooting.

    During the standoff, neighbor Richard Parson told LEX 18 News that he had spoken by telephone to Hutchinson after the incident began. Parson said Hutchinson told him that he had "blown his wife's brains out." Parson also said Hutchinson is a delusional individual who believes people are clones.

    Hutchinson later told the Lexington Herald-Leader that he shot Fontaine and then the paramedics because he was staging a coup against human clones.

    "You're about to see armageddon," said Hutchinson, who spoke calmly about a vast conspiracy involving UFOs, alien clones and the CIA.

    "I started with my wife," he said. "I shot her in the head. ... She's got a radio sticking in her skull."

    The incident began at around 3:30 p.m. Friday. An LEX 18 News crew arrived at the scene at 8645 Adams Lane near Exit 99 off I-75 as firefighters approached. LEX 18's Angelica St. John said that as Cowan and another firefighter, Jim Sandford, bent down to help Fontaine Hutchinson, who was lying on the ground in front of a home, shots rang out from the home.

    Cowan, 40, was a 12-year veteran of the department and had recently been promoted to lieutenant. Sandford was treated and released from the University of Kentucky Hospital on Saturday. A third firefighter and a police officer also suffered minor injuries in Friday's incident, neither from gunfire, said Lexington police chief Anthany Beatty.

    Over the weekend, Lexington firefighters continued to mourn Cowan's death and pondered the unexpected threats they face on the job.

    "You always know there's a danger there," Lexington firefighter Vicki Herald said during a break at a station Saturday afternoon. "But you expect a fire department fatality to relate to a fire incident, not a shooting. She shouldn't have died that way."

    "You're not ever thinking someone's going to harm you," said firefighter Keith Powell, who attended the same Baptist church as Cowan. "You're the good guy. You're taught to render aid to those who call for help."

    Assistant Fire Chief Roger Holland said authorities will conduct an internal investigation into the incident. Fire officials declined further comment Saturday, saying it was a day for mourning.

    "We have protocols for each situation," Holland said. "After we're through with the investigation, we will find out whether protocol was breached."

    Cowan came from a family with strong ties to her faith. Her father and one of her brothers are preachers, and she served in several of her church's ministries, said her pastor, the Rev. Richard Gaines of Consolidated Baptist Church in Lexington.

    Despite the risk that entailed her job, Cowan's family supported her.

    "Brenda died (doing) what she loved doing," Gaines said. "Nobody expected what happened to happen. The family is no less supportive of what she did."

    Firefighter Frederick Cotton, who entered the force with Cowan in 1992, said she was an "angel on earth."

    "Knowing Brenda, if she would have it to do again, she would have," Cotton said.

    Gaines said a funeral will be held for Cowan at noon Wednesday at Consolidated Baptist Church.

    Cowan is the third Lexington firefighter to die in the line of duty, according to Lexington fire battalion chief Jim Wells. Robert Wayne Martin died in 1986 when he fell off a fire truck, and Charles Williams, Jr., was killed in a blaze in 1997.


    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...9&sectionId=39

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    Memorial Scheduled Today For Slain Firefighter
    Lexington's First Black Female Firefighter To Be Buried Thursday

    POSTED: 8:39 a.m. EST February 18, 2004
    UPDATED: 8:51 a.m. EST February 18, 2004


    Story by The LouisvilleChannel.com

    -- Funeral services for Lexington's first black female firefighter are scheduled for Wednesday morning.

    Lt. Brenda Cowan will receive a traditional firefighter's funeral, and then will be buried Thursday in Union County, WLKY NewsChannel 32 reported.

    Thousands of firefighters from across the country, including more than 100 from the Louisville area, are expected to attend the services, WLKY NewsChannel 32 reported.

    Cowan, who was promoted to lieutenant last month, was shot Friday after she responded to a domestic-violence call.

    The suspect in her death, Pat Hutchinson, was ordered to undergo a mental evaluation. He's also accused of fatally shooting his wife that day.


    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...4&sectionId=39

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    Lexington, Kentucky Pays Tribute To Fallen Firefighter

    Lexington, Kentucky Pays Tribute To Fallen Firefighter


    People lined the streets of Lexington Wednesday to honor a fallen firefighter.

    Lt. Brenda Cowan was gunned down last Friday as she tried to help a shooting victim.

    A visitation was held Wednesday from 10am until noon at the Consolidated Baptist Church. Lt. Cowan's funeral followed as hundreds paid their respects.

    The "last call" for Lt. Cowan went out over the fire department's radio system just before 2pm.

    Helicopters flew over the church and Lt. Cowan's casket in memoriam to the fallen firefighter. A 21-gun salute followed.

    After the funeral, fire trucks took part in a processional. The route started at the Consolidated Baptist Church on Russell Cave Road and ended at the parking lot next to Rupp Arena.

    Friends, family, co-workers, and even people who didn't know Lt. Cowan are coming to grips with her death.

    Associate Pastor Anthony Stevenson, "She just enjoyed what she did--the sacrifices she made, the hard work."

    Lt. Brenda Cowan made the ultimate sacrifice last week. "She just gave everything."

    This large turnout from family, friends and firefighters holding hands consoling one another may be an indication of how much she gave and was cared for.

    Hundreds filed into the Consolidated Baptist Church in Lexington Tuesday night, where Cowan was an active member.

    She was involved in everybody's life from the children to youth to the seniors--she touched everyone's life, including 14 year-old Alyse Garrard. "She was like a big sister, a mother. She was just everything. She'd take me places. She was just wonderful."

    Whether they talked to Lt. Cowan daily or caught up with her when they could, one consensus opinion echoes throughout. John Turner, "It's a fact, Brenda was the salt of the earth."

    Stephen Branson is a college buddy. "She's just this super person that laughed and smiled and everybody was happy to be around her."

    Deana Garrard was Brenda's friend. "I know she would just be shocked at all the attention. She's going out in style and it's beautiful."

    As the sun began to set at the church, the support and celebration of the life of Lt. Brenda Cowan is just beginning.

    Mayor Teresa Isaac has declared Wednesday Red Ribbon Day in honor of the fallen firefighter.

    Lt. Cowan will be buried Thursday in the western Kentucky town of Sturgis.

    Visitation for Fontaine Hutchinson, the woman who Lt. Cowan tried to help, is also today. It is being held at Milward Funeral Home in Lexington from 5pm to 9pm. Services are Thursday at 1:30pm.

    Patrick Hutchinson, Fontaine's husband, is charged with killing her and Lt. Cowan. He's pleaded not guilty to both counts of murder and also faces two counts of attempted murder.

    Hutchinson must undergo a psychiatric evaluation before he returns to court next month.


    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...2&sectionId=39

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    Man Charged in Kentucky Firefighter Slaying Appears in Court

    MURRAY EVANS
    Associated Press

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -- A man charged with killing his wife and a Lexington firefighter in February appeared in court for the first time Wednesday for an arraignment hearing.

    Patrick Hutchinson's attorney, Kirk Bierbauer, said Hutchinson was not prepared to enter a plea, so Fayette County Circuit Court Judge James Ishmael entered a not guilty plea on Hutchinson's behalf.

    The case had been stalled in Fayette County District Court since February, as Hutchinson was undergoing court-ordered mental evaluations at the Kentucky Correctional Psychiatric Center in LaGrange. Hutchinson was arraigned in district court via a video feed and had not appeared at several scheduled district court hearings because of the ongoing evaluations.

    A Fayette County grand jury indicted Hutchinson earlier this month, moving the proceedings into circuit court.

    Hutchinson was arrested on Feb. 13 after a six-hour standoff with police. Firefighters were shot at as they arrived at his home near Interstate 75 to treat his wife, who had been shot.

    Lexington Fire Lt. Brenda Cowan, 40, was fatally shot as she tried to assist Hutchinson's wife, Fontaine, who was in the front yard. Another firefighter, Jim Sandford, also was shot, but survived. The window of a police cruiser also was shot out during the standoff.

    Hutchinson has been indicted on two murder charges, two attempted murder charges and a wanton endangerment charge.

    Hutchinson appeared Wednesday clad in an orange prison outfit and wearing ankle chains. He nodded and waved to four family members as he entered and exited the courtroom.

    Hutchinson's hair was neatly combed back, a much different picture than the public last saw of him. A jail photo of Hutchinson taken shortly after his arrest showed him with unkempt hair, a black right eye and cuts and blood on his face.

    During the 14-minute hearing, Hutchinson only spoke when answering Ishmael's questions.

    Bierbauer said he had received a preliminary report from the psychiatric center Tuesday and asked Ishmael to set a date for a competency hearing for Hutchinson. Mike Malone, the state prosecutor for the case, objected, saying he had not yet seen a copy of the report. Malone said he might have an independent expert review the report.

    Ishmael set a status hearing in the case for Oct. 1. Bierbauer said that he thought Ishmael would set a date for a competency hearing at that time.

    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...5&sectionId=39

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