The Overland Park police department is mourning the loss of one of its own following a confrontation Sunday that left two men dead.
Around 6 p.m. Sunday, Overland Park Police Officer Mike Mosher witnessed a hit-and-run accident at 143rd Street and Antioch Road while he was on his way to an off-duty assignment. Mosher was in his personal vehicle, but had on his uniform and was carrying his police radio. He followed the vehicle that was fleeing the scene of the accident north on Antioch and contacted dispatch.
Mosher followed the suspect vehicle to 123rd Street, where the suspect turned east and came to a stop just east of Mackey Street. In recorded radio traffic, Mosher can be heard telling dispatchers that the suspect got out of the car, approached him, and then refused to go back to his car. Officers responding to the call then reported hearing gunfire. Seconds later, dispatchers began receiving 911 calls from witnesses who were reporting an officer had been shot and was on the ground.
The suspect, who has not been publicly identified, was pronounced dead at the scene. Mosher was rushed to the Overland Park Regional Medical Center, where he later succumbed to his injuries with his family at his side.
Overland Park Police Chief Frank Donchez described Mosher, 37, as a decorated veteran of the department who had served the people of Overland Park for nearly 15 years. Mosher was named the department’s Officer of the Year in 2019. The department quickly rallied around each other and the family following Mosher’s passing.
“We had probably 50 or 75 officers up there at the hospital this evening,” Chief Donchez told the media in a late-night briefing. “This is a strong department; this is a family.”
Mosher leaves behind a wife and daughter. Lacy called Mosher a dedicated father and wonderful husband.
“You know, those two things come to light when you think about this officer. He cared about other officers. He cared about his community. He was a good, straight officer,” Lacy said.
Mosher was a field training officer. He also received the Gold Valor Award from the Kansas Association of Chiefs of Police following a 2018 shootout with an armed man. He also served as the president of the Overland Park chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police, and had been involved in efforts in recent weeks to urge the city to move forward with planned raises for public safety personnel during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Overland Park Police Department has now lost two officers in the line of duty. The first was Deanna Rose, who died after being run over by a suspected drunk driver she was trying to arrest in January 1985. She was 26-years-old.
Funeral arrangements for Mosher are pending.
Mike Frizzell is a freelance crime and fire reporter who runs Operation 100 News.