A Niagara County sheriff's deputy early Sunday shot a man who pointed a gun at him, according to the Niagara County Sheriff's Office.
Michael J. Rue, 40, of West Creek Drive, was undergoing surgery for an abdominal wound Sunday evening in Erie County Medical Center, Buffalo. He was conscious and speaking prior to the surgery, Sheriff Thomas Beilein said. The deputy who shot Rue has been placed on paid departmental leave while an investigation is under way.
"It was a traumatic event, and we want to make sure he's given the opportunity to get himself together," Beilein said of the deputy, whom he refused to identify.
Beilein said the investigation would probably be concluded within "the next couple days," at which time he expected charges -- probably menacing or attempted assault -- to be lodged against Rue.
Authorities said a boy was delivering newspapers in the Cayuga Village mobile home park when he observed a man -- one of his customers sitting in a chair with a shotgun on the floor beside him. The paperboy tried to communicate with the man, but he didn't respond.
When the paperboy returned home, he told his mother, who called 911 at about 5:20 a.m. reporting the incident, deputies said.
The deputy came to Rue's home at 1219 West Creek Drive in Cayuga Village, parked his patrol car in the driveway with the emergency lights flashing and approached the door with an automated defibrillator in his hand, due to the nature of the call, authorities said.
When the deputy saw the man moving in an enclosed porch area, he placed the electronic device on the ground. But when the deputy approached the entranceway, the man picked up a long gun and pointed it at him, police said. The deputy fired one shot from his department-issued .45-caliber pistol "to protect himself," Beilein said, striking Rue in the abdomen.
A short time later, a Town of Niagara officer arrived on the scene, and the two officers gave Rue first aid, police reported. Authorities said it is not known why Rue pointed the gun at the deputy. However, Beilein said that the man's family told police that he had been despondent lately. Beilein said that Rue was expected to be hospitalized for five to seven days.
Niagara Correspondent Mike Kurilovitch contributed to this report.