A Des Moines police officer could be on leave up to two months while Internal Affairs and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation look at a fatal shooting. Police Lieutenant Todd Dykstra says 35-year-old David Stehl broke into a house early Sunday and was smashing windows when police were called.
Officer Ben Ihde was one of the officers who responded as Stehl rampaged through the house. Dykstra says Officer Ihde sprayed Stehl with pepper spray but it had no effect. Stehl then broke a window and picked up two shards of glass. He approached the officers, threatening them with the shards of glass, and they retreated, ordering him to put down the broken window glass.
Backed to the far wall, he says Officer Ihde fired and hit the man twice, killing him on the spot. Stehl had a personal relationship with one of the residents there, Dykstra says. The residents told investigators that relationship had ended, and that they feared violence from Stehl, who reportedly had attempted suicide several times.
Officer Ihde has been on the Des Moines police force for three years. The last fatal shooting by Des Moines police was in June of 2005.