Barber Co. Sheriff, Undersheriff testify about fatal officer-involved shooting


BARBER COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) – It was standing room only once again at the Barber County Courthouse, as friends and family of Steven Myers’ widow, Kristina, came out for the hearing that saw both the Barber County Sheriff and Undersheriff take the stand to answer questions regarding the October 6 incident, where Myers was shot and killed.

For Kristina Myers, she just wants justice for her husband, Steven.

“This needs to stop, being able to go from department to department, not knowing the rules and regulations of your job has to stop,” said Kristina Myers.

Myers and her attorneys have been fighting that the Kansas Open Records Act has been violated in this case by the Barber County Sheriff’s Office. This even after the sheriff’s office turned over body camera video on Thursday.

Today’s hearing saw both Undersheriff Virgil “Dusty” Brewer and Sheriff Lonnie Small answer questions mostly limited to the body cameras and the footage.

Through his testimony, Sheriff Lonnie Small said he purposely turned off his body camera after Myers was shot and killed with a bean bag round.

Policies and procedures of the sheriff’s office and how they pertain to the use of the body cameras was also questioned.

Brewer stated during his testimony that he has not read the policies and procedures of the Barber County Sheriff’s Office in its entirety — something that came as a surprise to Myers’ widow.

“I thought it was surprising that they did not recognize their own policies and procedures,” said Kristina Myers. “Shouldn’t they have read those when they took the job?”

Kristina Myers’ attorney, Michael Kuckelman says the fight for justice isn’t over yet.

“We believe there was a Kansas Open Records Act violation and that violation has to be addressed and it needs to be an example to the other 104 counties in this state that they have to comply with these open records act request,” said Kuckelman.

What comes next? Kuckelman said they will file an amended plea on January 12, making additional claims of violations of the Kansas Open Records Act and a conference is set for March 29 where the final issues will be set for when this case eventually goes to trial.

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