19-year veteran of Columbus Police Dept. in stable condition, full recovery expected
The Columbus Police officer who was shot Thursday after serving a search warrant is improving.
In a Facebook post, the Columbus Police Department said "Sergeant Wangler’s condition is continuing to improve. The doctor’s are confident he will make a full recovery. We would like to thank everyone for their prayers, thoughts, food and donations! The support of our community has meant so much and has helped us get through this time."
The department also posted that $7,500 was raised Saturday and will be donated to Sgt. Wangler's family, thanks to the local Boy Scouts, Hy-Vee, and the Columbus community.
Police have identified the officer shot Thursday, after serving a warrant in central Columbus.
CPD said Sergeant Brad Wangler, a 19-year veteran of the CPD, was one of two officers approaching a house at approximately 7:30 p.m., when a wanted suspect, Jorje Robledo, 24, of Grand Island, shot Wangler two times. Robledo, was also shot and was taken into custody.
Robledo had an active warrant out for vioaltion of his probation.
In former cases, he was sentenced to 2 years for possession of a deadly weapon by a prohibited person, 1 year for failing to appear when on bail for a felony, and 90 days for operating a vehicle to avoid arrest. Robledo was given credit for time served in all 3 cases.
A warrant was issued in the possession of a deadly weapon case on April 16th for violating the terms of his probation, according to court records.
CPD told 1011 NOW when the officers arrived to serve the warrant, a woman left the house and told Wangler to go inside. When he went inside, he was approached by Robledo.
Robledo was armed and drew his weapon on Wangler, but Wangler's weapon jammed, according to authorities. He then ran out of his house to fix his weapon when Robledo switched to a rifle and shot Wangler.
Wangler was flown to the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha to be treated for his injuries. Wangler is currently in stable condition but will require surgery. Robledo is in critical condition.
“The family of the Columbus Police Department and the Community of Columbus offer their prayers and support to Sergeant Brad Wangler and his family,” posted the CPD on their Facebook page.
Wangler was recently promoted to the position of Sergeant in March of 2018.
His duties with the department have included being a field training officer, certified firearms instructor, drug recognition expert, and senior shift officer.
Wangler is also a retired Captain of the Nebraska National Guard. He was twice deployed overseas and was awarded the “Bronze Star” for his service.
Wangler is very involved in the Columbus community, volunteering through St. Isidore’s church, his kid’s extra-curricular activities, Boy Scouts, and the Teammates mentoring program, said city officials.
Wangler is married and has two children.
The Columbus Police Department said a donation account set up to support the family of Sergeant Wangler thanks to multiple individuals, including Boy Scout Pack #115, which Sgt. Wangler has been a major part of for many years.
The account is set up at First Nebraska Bank which has 10 locations across the state. The Columbus branch is located at 3225 23rd Street, across from Pizza Ranch.
Make checks payable to Brad or Nicole Wangler. Checks can be mailed to P.O. Box 1277 Columbus, NE 68601