Woman who witnessed shooting on N. Kentucky shares story

Local News

Neighbors caught in the crossfire on North Kentucky Avenue relive a nightmare, but it gives new insight into Friday’s night of gunfire.

We’re learning more about the ordeal and who the suspect, Barry Freeman was. People who saw the shootout between Freeman and police near Diamond Avenue say it’s something they’ll never forget.

One woman chose to keep her identity hidden for safety, but she witnessed the whole thing happen from her front door.

“There was so many rounds going off,” she says. “Barry was just a normal guy like everybody else. He lived with his son and his father.”

But her story helps paint a picture of the chaos, she says the victim, Jeffery Kempf tried to stop.

“He was our neighborhood watchman. We never had to worry about something going on without him notifying us,” she says of Kempf.

The woman says a single gunshot triggered the first 911 call, and 30 minutes later she saw Kempf get hit.

“Oh my gosh, it was just awful sounding,” she remembers amid the hail of bullets. “He was standing in the yard. Somebody had called his phone and he looked down to see who was calling.”

The red and blue response almost on her doorstep was massive. Police eventually cornered Freeman and shot him, but not before obvious signs they too feared for their lives.

“They’re just like us,” the woman says. She saw police officers running away from Freeman. “We were scared, we’re all human.”

Kempf’s family said he was unarmed. Neighbors say he was just checking up on them.

Four patrol cars and four homes were hit by bullets but no one else was hurt.

It was chaos on North Kentucky, and like so many neighbors, she’s caught in the middle.

“It’s hard to look Jeff’s way and just all that’s a flashback… It’s hard to look Barry’s was and know he has a family over there suffering. It’s just hard.”

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(This story was originally published May 16, 2018)

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