Prowling suspect shot by deputy in Ridgefield identified

RIDGEFIELD — Officials from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office recently identified the prowling suspect who was shot and killed by a deputy in Ridgefield the morning of Sun., Dec. 18 as 37-year-old Paul J. Kolar. Kolar was identified as a transient.


The deputy involved in the shooting was identified as 49-year-old Steve Fox, a 20-year veteran of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.


According to a news release from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office, at 7:50 a.m. on Sun., Dec. 18, Fox was dispatched to a 9-1-1 call of a prowler at the 300 block of Northwest 289th Street in Ridgefield. Fox made contact with the suspected prowler, later identified as Kolar, standing outside a Jeep SUV in an adjacent field.


As Fox approached, Kolar produced a handgun, raised the gun in a threatening manner and pointed the gun directly at the deputy. Fox reportedly drew his service weapon sidearm and fired at Kolar in self defense. Kolar was struck several times by rounds and collapsed.


Immediately following the shooting, officers with Ridgefield and La Center police departments arrived on scene. Kolar was secured and first aid was administered. Fox was not injured in the encounter. Kolar was transported to a local hospital and was later pronounced deceased.


It was discovered that in addition to the loaded pistol he pointed at Fox, Kolar also carried a second loaded pistol and large knife on his person. The Jeep SUV had been reported stolen out of La Grande, Ore. Kolar is a convicted felon with a lengthy criminal history. Investigation shows Kolar was in the process of burglarizing out buildings on the complainant’s property. Items of stolen property from other burglaries were also recovered at the scene.


“There is little doubt Deputy Fox’s quick reaction when threatened with deadly force by this armed and dangerous individual likely saved Deputy Fox’s life,” said Sheriff Chuck Atkins.
To date in 2016, 64 U.S. law enforcement officers have been shot and killed in the line of duty. This is a 68 percent increase over 2015 and the greatest number in the last five years, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.

This information was provided by the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.


RIDGEFIELD — A trespasser on a Ridgefield property was shot by a Clark County Sheriff’s deputy Sunday.

At 07:50 a.m. Sunday, a Clark County Sheriff’s deputy responded to a reported suspicious circumstances at the 300 Block NW 289th Street, Ridgefield. A homeowner reported a prowler trespassing on their property and called 9-1-1.

Shortly after arriving at the call, the responding deputy reported that he had engaged the suspected prowler and the suspect had been shot. Fire rescue was requested and the deputy attempted to provide initial medical aid to the suspect. The suspect was transported via ambulance to an area hospital. The suspect was declared deceased at the hospital. The deputy was not injured.

Preliminary investigation shows that the suspect was armed with a handgun at the time of the encounter. Detectives with the Regional Major Crimes team are investigating the circumstances of the shooting. The deputy involved has been placed on paid critical incident leave, which is standard practice.

No further details are being released at this time.


About The Author

Ken Vance got his start in the newspaper industry in 1987 as a reporter at The Columbian Newspaper in Vancouver. Vance graduated from Stevenson High School in Stevenson, WA, and attended Clark College in Vancouver. He worked for The Columbian from 1987-2001. He was most recently a staff member of The Reflector Newspaper in Battle Ground, where he served as editor since 2010 and reporter since 2007. Vance’s work in the newspaper industry has won him multiple awards, including a first place award from the Society of Professional Journalists for in-depth reporting.

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