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Archive for Sunday, July 28, 2002

Suspect convicted in officer shooting

July 28, 2002

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— A man charged with shooting an Overland Park police sergeant in December was found guilty of attempted second-degree murder.

David Grant Peterson was convicted Friday in Johnson County Court for shooting Robert Kolenda in the face during a confrontation at an Overland Park apartment.

Jurors were not told that Peterson was wanted in Washington on a second-degree murder charge, although they were told there was a felony warrant for his arrest.

Prosecutors had argued that Peterson should be convicted of attempted first-degree murder for intentionally shooting the officer to avoid arrest.

However, the defense argued that Peterson fired in self-defense when he was confronted by an armed man he didn't know was a police officer.

Kolenda and another officer were trying to arrest a friend of Peterson's who was allegedly involved in a fraud and forgery ring. They were approaching the front door of the man's apartment when the door opened and a shot was fired.

Kolenda testified that he never saw a gun or heard a word before he felt the .38-caliber bullet hit his face.

According to testimony, Kolenda was not in uniform, but had a large gold badge on the front of his vest.

Peterson is scheduled for a Sept. 11 sentencing on the firearm and attempted murder charges.

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