St. Louis police officer allegedly 'consumed alcohol' before fellow cop was killed in game of Russian Roulette
The St. Louis police officer accused of killing another cop inside his apartment allegedly shot her during a boozy game of Russian Roulette.
In a police misconduct report obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Lt. William Brown alleges Officer Nathaniel Hendren “consumed alcoholic beverages while on-duty” before he “recklessly discharged a firearm resulting in the death of another officer.”
Hendren has been charged with involuntary manslaughter as well as armed criminal action for allegedly shooting 24-year-old Officer Katlyn Alix. Both he and his partner Patrick Riordan, who was also present, were both on duty at the time.
Attorney James Towey told the newspaper his client, Riordan, “blew all zeroes” when he was given a breath test following the shooting. Riordan previously told investigators he advised his fellow officers against messing around with the firearm and was on his way out the door when he heard the gunshot that would kill Alix.
Hendren’s attorney, Talmage Newton IV, said he was not given the results of Hendren’s drug and alcohol screenings and accused officials of “providing information to everyone but me.”
Both Hendren and Riordan were with Alix inside Hendren’s apartment on Jan. 24 when they started playing around with a revolver. Shortly before 1 a.m., Hendren emptied all the bullets from the chamber, replacing only one before spinning the cylinder and taking aim.
When the gun failed to go off, he handed it to Alix, who also pulled the trigger. When it again did not fire, she passed it back to Hendren, who fired another round, this time into his colleague’s chest.
They used a police radio to request help and Alix was rushed to St. Louis University Hospital, where she was later pronounced dead.
In the shooting’s aftermath, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department called the incident an “accident” due to the “mishandling of a firearm,” but walked back those remarks during a press conference Thursday night.
“The circumstances around the shooting were much more reckless and dangerous than what I had originally understood,” St. Louis Police Chief John Hayden said.
Hayden added that effective immediately, all supervisors and commanders in the department will perform hourly check-ins with officers via radio system and GPS tracking.
The press conference came after Circuit Attorney Kimberly M. Gardner accused the police department of being “obstructionist” in its “completely inappropriate handling” of the investigation. She said prosecutors were told they would not be allowed to perform bloods tests on the officers despite “probable cause at the scene that drugs or alcohol may be a contributing factor” in the shooting.
A judge on Thursday raised Hendren’s bond from $50,000 to $100,000 — though the officer was able to post the 10% required to make bail. He is under house arrest and is not allowed access to firearms.