Affidavit: Suspect allegedly fired nearly 40 shots on bridge
A man accused of shooting at occupied vehicles last month on the Centennial Bridge is alleged to have fired at least 15 rounds from a handgun and at least 23 rounds from a rifle.
This is according to a probable cause affidavit that has been released in the case of Jason R. Westrem.
Westrem, 37, Houston Lake, Missouri, is charged in Leavenworth County District Court with one count of attempted first-degree murder, two counts of aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated endangering a child and four counts of discharging a firearm at an occupied vehicle.
He is accused of firing at occupied vehicles May 27 on the Centennial Bridge, which stretches across the Missouri River from Leavenworth to Platte County, Missouri.
One person was wounded by gunfire during the incident, and multiple vehicles were struck by bullets. Westrem also was injured when he was struck by a vehicle.
Army Master Sgt. David Royer has been credited with stopping the shooting incident by striking the suspect with his pickup truck.
Westrem remains hospitalized. Leavenworth County Undersheriff Jim Sherley said the Sheriff’s Office is attempting to arrange for suitable housing that will address Westrem’s medical needs in order to take custody of him.
The probable cause affidavit provides details about the allegations against Westrem.
Probable cause affidavits are initially sealed in Kansas court cases, but people can request the documents be disclosed.
The Leavenworth Times requested the release of the affidavit that was prepared in support of the charges against Westrem. The Leavenworth Times received a copy of the affidavit Wednesday.
The document was written by Sgt. Matthew Nickel of the Leavenworth Police Department.
According to the document, Westrem stopped his Ford Taurus in the eastbound lane at the bridge the morning of May 27. He allegedly fired multiple rounds from a 9 mm handgun while in the driver’s seat of his car, shooting through the windshield.
Westrem then reportedly got out of his vehicle, leaving the handgun on a passenger seat. He allegedly retrieved what Nickel described as an AR-15 style rifle from the trunk.
Westrem allegedly fired multiple rounds at vehicles while standing next to his own car.
One of the witnesses to the incident was a man who was working on the bridge as part of a construction project. The man told police he saw a gun pointed toward him and he feared for his life and the lives of others. He began to tell people to drive away as he ran east on the bridge.
Detectives later found the “stop” and “slow” sign the man had been using to direct traffic. The sign had two holes that may be bullet holes, according to the affidavit.
Royer struck Westrem with a Chevrolet Silverado. Westrem became trapped under the front of the truck, according to the affidavit.
A detective from the Leavenworth Police Department later collected six loaded rifle magazines and four loaded handgun magazines from a duffel bag in the trunk of Westrem’s vehicle.
Each of the rifle magazines had a capacity for 30 bullets. The handgun magazines each had a capacity for 17 bullets.