Henderson police shoot, kill woman

An ice cream truck driver was shot by Henderson police Tuesday afternoon after she threatened her child and officers with a knife, police said.

The 42-year-old woman -- who was coming to the aid of her husband, who had been stopped by police -- later died at Sunrise Hospital, police said.

The incident began during a traffic stop about 2:15 p.m. when 65-year-old Zyber Selimaj, who was also driving an ice cream truck, was pulled over for speeding and failing to obey a stop sign near Sunridge Heights and Pecos Ridge parkways, police said. That intersection is about a half-mile south of Coronado High School.

Henderson police Capt. Robert Wamsley said Selimaj was visibly shaken and made suicidal statements to police. Wamsley said there was a language barrier between Selimaj and police.

Selimaj refused to sign his citation, although he eventually did, Wamsley said.

During the traffic stop, an officer called Selimaj's wife, Wamsley said. The woman showed up in another ice cream truck with her two sons, ages 7 and 11, police said.

At some point Selimaj's wife went back to the truck and got a knife, Wamsley said. Police said she held the knife to her son's throat and made suicidal statements.

Police were able to get the boy away from his mother, but she would not drop the knife, police said. Two officers tried to use their Tasers on her, police said. "There were attempts to subdue her and tase her," Wamsley said. "The attempts failed."

Keith Paul, a Henderson police spokesman, said the woman was shot at 3:11 p.m.

Police did not release the name of Selimaj's wife. The Associated Press reported her name as Deshira Selimaj.

Terry Tebbs was driving by the intersection to pick up his daughter at Coronado when he saw Zyber Selimaj outside of his ice cream truck before the shooting, he said.

Tebbs said Selimaj appeared emotionally distraught at being pulled over. "He didn't look right sitting by the gutter," Tebbs said. "He looked edgy."

Selimaj was being held in Henderson's jail Tuesday evening on traffic violations and obstruction of police charges, police said. The two boys were at Child Haven on Tuesday night, police said.

Henderson police did not release the name of the 23-year-old officer who shot the woman. They did say the officer has been with the department two years. The officer will be placed on administrative leave while the incident is investigated, police said.

Contact reporter Antonio Planas at aplanas@reviewjournal.com or (702) 383-4638.