Woman shot by Des Moines officer in October released from hospital, taken to jail


Katherine Margaret Louise Mehle (Polk County Jail)

DES MOINES, Iowa — The woman shot by a Des Moines police officer in October after she reportedly advanced on the officer with a knife has been released from the hospital and now faces multiple charges.

The Des Moines Police Department announced Friday evening that 35-year-old Katherine Margaret Louise Mehle was released from the hospital and transported to the Polk County Jail. She is charged with assault with a dangerous weapon, assault on a police officer with a dangerous weapon, and interference with official acts with a weapon.

Mehle was hospitalized in critical condition back on Oct. 5 after she was shot by Senior Officer Ryan Chareunsab, a 34-year-old who has served with the Des Moines Police Department since 2013.

The shooting occurred downtown after a man called 911 that evening to report that Mehle had tried to stab him as he walked in the 1400 block of Walnut Street, according to the Des Moines Police Department.

Scene of police shooting in Des Moines on October 5, 2021. (WHO 13)

Chareunsab responded to the scene two minutes later and was directed by the victim to Mehle, who was now in the 1200 block of Walnut Street.

“Mehle, on three occasions, advanced towards the officer while armed with a knife,” Des Moines Police Sgt. Paul Parizek said Friday in a press release. “Mehle acknowledged the officers numerous commands to drop the knife, but refused to do so.”

Chareunsab fired three to four rounds at Mehle less than a minute after arriving to the scene, police said.

Chareunsab wasn’t injured and was put on paid administrative leave amid an investigation into the incident by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.

Parizek said Chareunsab’s body camera footage will eventually be released after the investigation is finished.

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