- Associated Press - Friday, June 20, 2014

SCHUYLER, Neb. (AP) - Officers shot and killed a man early Friday who opened fire on a Nebraska state trooper and drove off, leading to a wild chase through two counties, authorities said.

The chase began around 1:30 a.m. in Columbus after a trooper pulled over a pickup truck that matched the description of one connected to a report about an armed man, according to the Nebraska State Patrol. As the trooper approached the driver’s side window, the driver fired at the trooper and then roared away. The trooper returned fire and soon gave chase.

The chase lasted about 10 minutes, ending when the trooper lost sight of the truck on a county road, the patrol said. The patrol dispatched a helicopter, and other police agencies sent officers to the area.

The truck was spotted a little before 3 a.m. on U.S. Highway 30 on the east side of Columbus, and it sped off eastward into Colfax County, with the patrol’s helicopter overhead, helping to guide officers on the ground.

“This was a very dangerous situation,” patrol commander Col. David Sankey said.

The truck eventually ran over two sets of spike strips and came to a stop. It then started moving again, ramming into a Platte County deputy’s patrol unit that was parked along the highway. Then the pickup backed into two more police cruisers.

The patrol said officers then fired at the truck.

The man, who was identified as 32-year-old Jason T. Van Buskirk, of Columbus, was pronounced dead at the scene.

An autopsy will be performed and a grand jury will investigate, as is required anytime a person dies during an arrest or while in custody of law enforcement.

None of the officers was shot, but a Schuyler police officer was struck by flying glass and was treated at a hospital and released, the patrol said.

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