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KANSAS CITY, Kan. – A man accused in the fatal shooting of a police detective in Kansas was charged with capital murder Wednesday, a day after Missouri authorities charged him with shooting and wounding a woman during the same incident.
Curtis Ayers, 28, is accused of fatally shooting Kansas City Police Detective Brad Lancaster. He also is charged with several other felonies arising from his alleged carjacking of three vehicles after Lancaster was shot on Monday, and his fleeing to Kansas City, Missouri, where he was shot and arrested by police.
The intentional killing of a police officer carries a possible death sentence in Kansas.
Jerome Gorman, district attorney in Kansas' Wyandotte County, said he hasn't decided whether to seek the death penalty, but said he hoped the Kansas case takes precedence. Gorman noted that Ayers remained hospitalized Wednesday in Missouri, saying he wasn't in critical condition but not well enough to be transferred to Kansas.
No possible motive has been released, but Gorman said Ayers was armed with two guns when he was arrested.
"He was very capable of doing a lot more damage," Gorman said.
Police were called to the Hollywood Casino near the Kansas Speedway on Monday after a casino security agent saw Ayers loitering in the parking lot. Lancaster confronted Ayers, who shot the detective several times and then fled in Lancaster's unmarked car, investigators said.
Ayers is accused of abandoning Lancaster's car and carjacking another vehicle with two children inside. He abandoned that vehicle, leaving the children unharmed, and took another car that he wrecked in Kansas City, Missouri, where officers shot him moments after Ayers shot and wounded a woman in a failed carjacking, investigators said.
He is facing numerous charges related to the incidents, including aggravated robbery and kidnapping in Kansas, and first-degree assault in Missouri.
New charges of aggravated robbery, aggravated burglary and criminal possession of a firearm were filed Wednesday against Ayers in Leavenworth County, where he is accused of stealing one of the cars, the Kansas City Star reported.