Video Released Of Chase That Ended In Stabbing, Shooting

Officer Slashed Across Face; Suspect Fatally Shot

Lafayette police have released dash cam video of a chase that ended with an officer slashed across the face and the suspect shot to death.

Officer Jeff Web was investigating a possible arson and fight in the 600 block of Oregon Street on Oct. 19 when Paul J. Spencer, 39, led him on a nearly-four mile chase through downtown Lafayette, police said.


Spencer's car crashed into an embankment at South 9th Street and Potomac Avenue, with two police cars behind him -- Web's car and another driven by Officer Ron Dombkowski.

That's when Spencer sprang from the car, ran toward Dombkowski and slashed him with a large knife, police said.

Spencer was then shot by police. He was hit at least seven times.

The dash cam video shows Spencer crashing his car, jumping out and running out of frame. Yelling and gunshots are then heard.

"I've been doing this for a long time, 33 years, and I've never seen anybody get out of a vehicle and attack an officer like that," said Capt. Steve Hartman with Lafayette police.

Spencer later died of his injuries.

Dombkowski was released from an area hospital the next day.

"You never want to use deadly force. You always want to come to work and help people," Hartman said. "But when you're faced with that situation in a split second, you have to be ready to react, and, thankfully, those officers were that morning."

All officers involved are back on the job after an investigation found they followed department policy.

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