WICHITA, Kansas -- It is difficult for Jesus Ponce to put his thoughts into words after discovering that his long-time friend and former roommate is now dead.
"It was more surprising more than anything. The first thing that went through my mind was no, that can't be him," said Ponce. "I think he was at the wrong place at the wrong time."
Ponce had an 11-year relationship with Troy Lanning, 24. Lanning was shot by a Wichita police officer on Saturday night just before midnight.
"Whenever something happens like this we always wonder why people do what they do," said Deputy Police Chief Tom Stolz.
A woman called 911 after hearing gunshots in the 4600 block of Charles in South Wichita.
When officers arrived, they saw a suspicious vehicle driving away. The vehicle then led officers on a 7-minute chase, ending near 35th and Everrett.
Police say 4 suspects stopped and fled the car, including Lanning, who allegedly reached into a black bad he was carrying and the officer was forced to fire.
"(He) turns with that bag in his hand at chest level and is moving toward to officer in the bag and at that time the officer feels enough jeopardy that fires rounds from his handgun striking lanning several times," said Stolz.
Lanning was an absconder with an active county warrant. Authorities say the officer was just doing his job. But according to Ponce, he was no troublemaker.
"He always tried to stay out of trouble and he tried to stay out of people's way." said Ponce. "We just miss him a lot already. He was a good friend, real good friend."