Probe Continues Into Shooting by Nev. Deputies

HAWTHORNE, Nev. (AP) - A man shot and killed by Mineral County sheriff's deputies was a fugitive from North Dakota who failed to report to prison after being convicted of stealing and transporting weapons, a federal attorney said Thursday.

Drew Wrigley, the U.S. attorney for North Dakota, said Kelly Stenstrum, 31, died in Hawthorne "as a result of contact with law enforcement."

The Nevada Department of Public Safety, which is handling the investigation, did not immediately identify the man killed Tuesday during a confrontation with deputies.

Lt. Dave Jones with the Nevada Division of Investigation on Thursday said authorities were awaiting a fingerprint comparison before confirming the identity.

Authorities allege the suspect committed four home burglaries in the southern Nevada town of Mesquite, where he stole a Cadillac and headed north on U.S. 95.

He was stopped by a Highway Patrol Trooper, but fled into Hawthorne, where he abandoned the car and took off on foot.

The incident also led to the brief lockdown of the nearby senior center.

Daniel Burns, spokesman for the state public safety agency, said two Mineral County deputies were involved in the shooting, and several shots were fired. The deputies' names were not immediately released. No officers were injured.

Burns said the suspect had a weapon in his hand but did not fire it.

Stenstrum was sentenced in July to nearly three years behind bars, three years of supervised release and restitution totaling nearly $22,700 after pleading guilty in April to three felony charges.

Authorities said he stole 33 guns in North Dakota from the Grand Forks Home of Economy store and seven guns from a private gun dealer last year, selling some of them in Wisconsin.

Investigators said Stenstrum broke into the Grand Forks store by going in through the roof and descending a rope ladder. The break-in was capture by video security cameras.

The U.S. Marshals Service said Stenstrum in August failed to report to a New Jersey prison where he was to serve his sentence, and had been considered armed and dangerous.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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