Blue Valley Northwest community mourns loss of 17-year-old who died in officer-involved shooting

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- Family members have identified the boy shot and killed by an Overland Park police officer Saturday night.

Seventeen-year-old John Albers, a junior at Blue Valley Northwest, died in an officer-involved shooting, his family said.

"We are heartbroken at the loss of our beloved son, John. We truly appreciate the outpouring of support from friends, family and community. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers and for respecting our privacy during this very difficult time," a family member said via social media. "John was loved by many."

Albers was shot by an officer who was responding to a report of a male threatening to take his own life at that location. Police said when they arrived at the scene and approached the home, the garage door opened and a vehicle exited, "moving rapidly" toward one of the officers. At that point, the officer fired, killing Albers.

Friends gathered Sunday evening in remembrance of Albers.

"We want to remember him in a way that's honorable," Gabriel Bright said. "I believe that this vigil brings awareness to how good he was. He wasn't always painted in the best light. I also think it beings awareness to suicide as he was suicidal."

Friends wrote their memories of Albers on balloons and released them into the air.

"I love you, John. I will miss you. It hurts. It's hurt a lot of people, but you will not be forgotten," Bright said.

Overland Park Police released a statement on Facebook later Saturday.

On January 20th, 2018 the Overland Park Police Department responded to the 9300 block of W.149th Terrace reference a welfare check of a suicidal male. As the responding officers approached the residence to make contact, the garage door opened and a vehicle exited the garage, moving rapidly toward one of the responding officers. The officer discharged his service weapon striking the male driver. The driver died at the scene.

The Johnson County Officer Involved Shooting Investigation Team (OISIT) in conducting the investigation. The officers were uninjured and the officer involved was placed on administrative leave pending the investigation. The deceased male name is not being released at this time. If you have any information or witnessed this incident you are asked to call the Overland Park Police Department at 913-895-6300 or the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS.

The investigation is ongoing.

If you are having suicidal thoughts, we urge you to get help immediately.

Go to a hospital, call 911 or call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433).

Click on the boxes below for our FOX 4 You Matter reports and other helpful phone numbers and resources.

CLICK THIS BOX FOR FOX 4 STORIES ON MENTAL HEALTH.

CLICK THIS BOX FOR MORE MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES.

Previous coverage: