By Craig Day, The News On 6
OWASSO, OK -- An off-duty police officer who shot an armed robber at an Owasso convenience store Wednesday afternoon has been place on routine leave.
Turns out the suspected robber had several warrants and was wanted by federal authorities.
At the Kum and Go store at 86th street North and Main in Owasso, it was business as usual Thursday, but 24 hours earlier, it was anything but ordinary.
A man armed with this .22 caliber rifle that looked like a machine gun robbed the store, but didn't realize an off-duty police officer was filling up his car outside.
"As the suspect started turning toward him, the officer fired his weapon multiple times," Assistant Chief Scott Chambliss, Owasso Police Department, said.
That armed man was Jose Moreno, 24, of Tulsa. He's expected to survive and is under guard at a Tulsa hospital. The officer who shot Moreno is detective Jason Woodruff, who has worked in Owasso for six years.
"You're talking about one officer confronting a suspect by himself in the middle of an armed robbery is a very dangerous situation," Chambliss said. "And there was no room for hesitation in having to deal with that."
The robbery, and the fact that it happened at 5 p.m. in the afternoon, came as a surprise to many people in the area.
"It's just really scary that there could be that much violence," LeeAnn Roth, an Owasso native, said. "Owasso has always been just a quiet town."
"I was kind of surprised that it happened, but glad there was a police officer there," Joe Kanarsky said.
Although Owasso's population has grown to about 28,000 people it still has some of its small town appeal including a low crime rate. The police department says they can go years without a convenience store armed robbery.
While Officer Woodruff is on routine leave, Moreno faces a number of counts including armed robbery. Many people in Owasso are just thankful the officer was in the right place and no one else was hurt.
"I'm glad that the police were on the ball and took care of it right away," Roth said.
Moreno had two warrants for his arrest in Tulsa County and was also wanted by U.S. Marshals for probation violations.