Standoff ends with death of Glenrock resident

Glenrock police Department Officer Warren Steele and Sgt. Colter Felton observe the scene on Fort Laramie March 22. 

Law enforcement watch as the home burns. 

Natrona County Sheriff's Office await further instruction outside the home on Fort Laramie.

Law enforcement cleanup the scene at approximately 8:15 p.m.

By Ethan Brogan

A 5-hour standoff between law enforcement ended with the death of 86-year-old Leonard Frederick Wake. The nature of Wake's death is still unknown. 

At approximately 12:28 p.m. March 22, the Glenrock Police Department received a report of an individual brandishing a weapon at 146 Fort Laramie. Upon arrival, GPD attempted to make contact with the man inside the home.

"We made numerous attempts by knocking on the door as well as using a bullhorn, shouting," GPD Sgt. Colter Felton said. "He didn't respond to our attempts."

GPD Chief Tim Hurd attempted to give Wake a bottle of water when Wake fired a weapon toward Hurd.

"He fired at us during one of the attempts to make contact with him," Felton said. "The round came through the door and very narrowly missed the Chief and myself."

According to the GPD, Wake had at least one rifle and pistol in his home.

Due to the proximity of the incident, Glenrock High School and Glenrock Elementary School entered a lockout, no students were allowed to leave the building, but remained in class. The Glenrock Intermediate/Middle School was placed on high alert.

"Because we were so close to two of the schools and the possibility of students living in those neighborhoods, we opted to place them on lockout," Felton said.

GPD contacted the Natrona County Sheriff's Office, who brought SWAT equipment to the scene. While law enforcement agencies waited outside, the building began to smolder, then ignited into flames. The cause of the fire is still undetermined but "no action was taken by law enforcement," to stoke the fire, according to the GPD.

The Glenrock Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to the scene and set up a staging area to extinguish the flames. While the GVFD waited to extinguish the flames, rounds were firing from the building, believed to be a result of the blaze.

After the Natrona County Sheriff's Office arrived on scene, the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation initiated a lockdown on the area and set up a perimeter. Law enforcement still attempted to talk with Wake, but to no avail.

Once officers made entry into the building at approximately 6:30 p.m., it was discovered that Wake was deceased and the situation was deemed safe.

The cause of Wake's death is still undetermined at this time.

GHS and GES students were released from the lockout at approximately 3:40 p.m.

More information concerning the incident will be in this week's edition of the Glenrock Independent.


Glenrock Independent

Physical Address:506 W. Birch, Glenrock, WY 82637 Mailing Address: PO Box 109, Douglas, WY 82633 Phone: (307) 436-2211

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