A Manhattan man who pleaded no contest to attempted voluntary manslaughter in an early 2018 police shooting incident was sentenced Monday morning to 50 months, or more than four years, in prison.
Riley County district court judge Grant Bannister sentenced Mark Harrison, 38, to 43 months in prison on the attempted manslaughter charge, in addition to seven months in prison on a related criminal damage to property charge. Grant ordered the sentences to run consecutively and for Harrison to undergo 36 months of post-release supervision.
Harrison will receive credit for time served, as he could potentially serve only 15% of his sentence with good behavior in prison.
The charges stem from a Jan. 5, 2018, incident in which Harrison barricaded himself in his home in a three-hour standoff with law enforcement officers.
Harrison fired a gun 33 times during the standoff in what his attorneys claim were “warning shots,” striking Riley County Police Department Sgt. Pat Tiede in the leg. Tiede — a childhood acquaintance of Harrison who specifically responded to the incident as a familiar face to try to calm Harrison down — was treated that same day for a non-life threatening injury.
Harrison was initially charged with three counts of attempted capital murder and one count of criminal damage to property. In February, jurors found Harrison not guilty of two counts of attempted capital murder and guilty of criminal damage to property related to gunshot damage to an armored vehicle that sheltered officers near the incident.
However, they were unable to reach a decision on the attempted capital murder charge in Tiede’s shooting. State prosecutors sought a retrial on that charge until Harrison pleaded no contest to a reduced attempted voluntary manslaughter charge.
At Monday morning’s hearing, Bannister said it was “fortuitous” that the incident didn’t end more gravely, but he also credited RCPD’s preparedness in dealing with the matter.
“This very easily could have been a much more rampant headline with much more casualty and destruction than did occur,” Bannister said in his ruling.
Harrison was also ordered to pay $7,670 to Tiede for his out-of-pocket medical expenses and to the Geary County Sheriff’s Department, whose armored vehicle was damaged in the shooting. Before Bannister announced the sentence, Harrison apologized to RCPD officials who were in the room and regretted that Tiede was not in the room so he could apologize in person.
“I want to thank you for maintaining your composure during my time of crisis,” Harrison told the officials. “Without your restraint, I might not be standing here today.”