Neighbors worried for years about suspected gunman shot outside Highlands Elementary

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FAIRWAY, Kan. — A man firing a gun at police in a shootout right across from an elementary school would come as a surprise to almost anyone. Anyone, but some of the people who live in the Fairway neighborhood across from Highlands Elementary.

Shana Althouse said she first started noticing police at her former neighbor’s home several years ago, around the time he would have been in his late teens.

“About five police cars arrived and cuffed him and took him away,” Althouse said.

FOX4 tracked down arrest records at the West 62nd Street home dating back to 2011 and the domestic violence no-contact orders barring the son from his mother.

Neighbors said ambulances were called to the home. They believe they were connected to drug charges FOX4 uncovered for the man believed to be the suspect in Friday’s shooting. That man’s name has not been released yet because formal charges have not been filed.

“We were used to it by then. We’d be out in the yard and (new neighbors) would be saying ‘What’s going on?’ We’d say, ‘Oh, it`s just him again,’ and every time it was,” Althouse said.

She said neighbors were worried not only for their children’s safety, but those right across the street at Highlands Elementary where FOX4’s cameras spotted bullet holes in the windows above the entrance to the school Friday night.

“The discussion was at some point something is going to happen. I think that’s what we all felt as a neighborhood,” Althouse said.

She’s glad it appears the man who shot at police will survive and hopes he gets the help he needs. She just wishes it would have come sooner.

“I think we depended on the fact we were in a small community that we lived in, that the police had this under control and we trusted that,” Althouse said.

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