Suspect shot in Wallace standoff
A Shoshone County Sheriff's Deputy takes cover behind a parked car while Sheriff Mike Gunderson attempts to talk with the suspect.
A Wallace man was shot by law enforcement Tuesday afternoon following a prolonged standoff with officials.
Hagadone News Network | July 20, 2021 4:46 PM
Editor's note: Some of the photos and video accompanying this article may be considered graphic and not appropriate for all readers.
WALLACE – A Shoshone County man was shot Tuesday afternoon following a lengthy standoff with law enforcement.
According to witnesses, the incident began around 2 p.m. when the suspect, identified as Esten Smykal of Wallace, began acting erratically and threatening people outside on King Street in Wallace.
The first shots fired by Smykal were at a truck reportedly owned by his parents who live nearby. The suspect then entered a nearby purple car that was parked on the road, reloaded, and proceeded to fire at a passing Idaho Department of Lands truck that was traveling south on King Street toward the St. Joe region.
Smykal then reportedly entered the vehicle and reloaded a second time. It was during this time that Shoshone County Sheriff's deputies as well as Sheriff Mike Gunderson arrived on scene.
“He’s got some balls for sure. He just walked right up the road with that guy pointing a gun at him,” the witness said of Gunderson. “He was very patient with the guy and gave him way more chances than I would have to put the gun down.”
For approximately 15-20 minutes, Gunderson negotiated with Smykal in the middle of the street and urged him to drop the two handguns that he was holding.
One witness said at one point Smykal told Gunderson that he “had him in his sights,” to which the sheriff responded, “I know, I just want to talk.”
Smykal allegedly attempted to bargain with the police and asked them to set their weapons down and allow him to go inside and kiss his girlfriend and his dog goodbye and then he would surrender peacefully.
It is unclear at this time what precipitated law enforcement to finally fire on Smykal, but witnesses told the Shoshone News-Press that he ignored numerous warnings to drop his weapons and repeatedly pointed them at the deputies while shouting threats.
After Smykal was shot, Shoshone County Fire EMS arrived and transported him for treatment. It is unknown at this time how serious Smykal's injuries are or how many times he was shot.
The home that the suspect was allegedly coming from has a recent reputation in the neighborhood as a haven for drug users and neighbors weren’t entirely surprised when they realized who was involved. Witnesses also stated that Smykal's behavior was erratic and he was even seen drinking from something during the incident.
This is a developing story and more information will be released when it becomes available.