Woman shot after police pursuit

LEWISTON — A woman was shot in the neck by police Tuesday after a chase through the city that ended in a crash on Central Avenue behind Raymond A. Geiger Elementary School.

Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Lewiston police officers tend to an unidentified woman after she was shot following a chase through Lewiston that ended near the rear entrance to Geiger Elementary School on Central Avenue in Lewiston late Tuesday afternoon.

Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Tenants and neighbors gather on the steps of an apartment building on Central Avenue in Lewiston on Tuesday night as police investigate a nearby shooting. A woman driving a pickup led police on a chase through Lewiston before losing control and smashing into the cars at right. The driver backed up and slammed into trees just to the left of the photo. It is unclear what happened next, but witnesses say they heard three to five shots. The driver lay motionless on the ground until being taken away by ambulance.

Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

An ambulance heads to the scene where a woman lies behind the truck, background, that she crashed on Central Avenue in Lewiston Tuesday evening after leading police on a high speed chase throughout the city.

Kristy Cookson

Police say officers fired after Kristy Cookson, 28, of Manchester tried to run over at least one officer. Her gunshot wound was not life-threatening, police said.

Police Chief Michael Bussiere said no one other than Cookson was injured.

He said the chase began around Walnut and Howard streets when officers attempted to pull over a dark green 2005 Chevrolet pickup that was being driven erratically. Cookson allegedly refused to pull over and ended up speeding down Central Avenue, Bussiere said.

She lost control of the vehicle on a curve and crashed into a parked vehicle at 384 Central Ave. at about 5:40 p.m. The driver's side of the car was smashed and the back window was shattered. The crash pushed the car into two others parked next to it, but the damage to those cars appeared to be minimal.

"That's when the officers attempted to stop the woman, and somewhere in that incident it looks like she attempted to run at least one of the officers over, or was driving back and forth trying to get out," Bussiere said. "Both officers engaged her and fired shots at the vehicle and at the suspect. One of the shots did strike the suspect."

The officers involved in the shooting were Raymond Vega and Keith Caouette, Bussiere said. The Attorney General's Office is investigating the use of deadly force, he said.

Cookson eventually backed into a tree and police were able to get her out of the truck, Bussiere said. He said he believed the officers used a Taser because she was still uncooperative.

Bussiere said officers got out of their car and asked Cookson to get out of her vehicle, but she continued to try to drive away.

Cookson suffered a gunshot wound to the neck and was treated before being taken by ambulance to Central Maine Medical Center for nonlife-threatening injuries, Bussiere said.

"I heard the sirens; I heard the crash and I heard the (truck) in reverse," said Judy Cousins, who lives in a second-floor apartment at 384 Central Ave., where the incident took place.

"Police were flying everywhere," she said.

Cousins and other residents of the apartment building said between three and five shots were fired.

"From what I've been told by the officers investigating the driving and
what led up to it, it's a minor miracle that nobody else is at the
hospital tonight other than her," Bussiere said. 

Bussiere said Cookson has a lengthy criminal history that includes several OUI convictions.

In 2005, Cookson was charged with being a fugitive from justice stemming from charges on six warrants from Florida, according to Sun Journal archives. The charges were dismissed. Cookson also was charged with at least two OUIs in Lewiston, one in 2007 and another in 2008.

rmetzler@sunjournal.com

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Comments

Audrey Alcala's picture

tron....did your folks have

tron....did your folks have any children that lived? I hate to bust your fantasy bubble but cops don't make $50,000 a year. And did you read the entire article and this womans record? I have no doubt she pushed the cops to the point of them having to shoot her! You never ever have anything positive to say.

 's picture

Well blue, you are wrong.

Well blue, you are wrong. If you go to the city's website you'll learn that most cops, not all but most, earn $20 and hour. That was in 2004, the website is a little behind the time. Now figure it out, and add the thousands of dollars of training, the thousands of dollars in overtime, the money they get paid for "clothing" medical and retirement benefits and the cops earn well OVER 50k. Go ahead, go to the the city's website. Then write your apology.

Karen Parker's picture

Is there anything that LPD

Is there anything that LPD can do that you people do not jump down their throats for? you dont know what really happened you are just reading what the SJ puts down and we all know how accurate they are.... guess they should have let her go so she could have killed our children.. go back to school and learn something because i dont think that you idiots have any brains and if you did you would probably take it out and play with it.

Allisa Milliard's picture

People always complain that

People always complain that the police used poor judgement. What about the perp? She could always have stopped when the police said to. People always complain that the police chased someone and someone could have gotten hurt which is true. Yet they never say a word about the perp that ran and the damage they cause. In a perfect world, perps wouldn't run and cops wouldn't have to chase them. I hope they lock her up, make her do rehab, repay the damages she caused. But she won't, she has too many problems and just can't be expected to take responsablility of herself.

Billy Dumont's picture

Loooooooooooseeeeeeerrrrrrrr

Loooooooooooseeeeeeerrrrrrrr

RUSSELL DILLINGHAM's picture
staff

To those of you who

To those of you who criticize the cops for doing their jobs.  You were not there and potentially run over.  Plus, I'll bet you'd be the first to jump all over them if they did try to taze her instead of shooting........the reality of hitting somebody with a tazer in that situation is pretty slim....but if they did let her go and she hit and killed somebody else....like a relative of yours.  How would you feel then. You would be jumping up and down calling for their heads for not taking action.  I get a kick out of reading some of the comments that many of you "perfect world" people write.  Get a grip and be happy that there are people who are willing to do the job of a cop.  For the most part, it is a thankless job.  I think I speak for the majority of people who are proud of the work they do.

 's picture

At 50K plus a year, I think

At 50K plus a year, I think they're thanked more than enough.

 's picture

The police escalate a

The police escalate a situation, use poor judgement, run their testosterone though the roof and acted irrationally, yup , I'm sure the AG's office will find this a good shoot. Keystone Kops are alive and well in Lewiston.

Rick Lee's picture

if you looked at the article

if you looked at the article northwood it said that they thought that she was going to not that did did attempt to run an officer over. and if that was the case then shoot the tires out number one and number two it didnt need to take 5 shots i think that that was a bit much. as for shooting the stupid driver in the neck how can they be sure that it wasa non life threatening injury . and why didnt they try to use their tazors before hand after the first parked car that she hit truck windows were open werent they. but i do appreciate the lpd for somewhat doing their job for making sure that noone else got hurt out of this ordeal.

Dave Bussey's picture

Another idiot that when

Another idiot that when taken to court will get light jail time throw the book at her !Let her reflect on her bad behavior !!! GOOD JOB LPD !!!!

GARY SAVARD's picture

She should have stopped when

She should have stopped when the police told her to. Bad decision on her part. Good job by the Lewiston PD.

RONALD RIML's picture

And she tried to kill a cop

And she tried to kill a cop how?

"somewhere in that incident it looks like she attempted to run at least one of the officers over, or was driving back and forth trying to get out," Bussiere said.

Looks like??

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When I was a young Sailor - I drank like a Sailor, fought like a Sailor, and screwed like a Sailor. Now that I am old and wise - I have a few scars, but many fond memories.

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