City identifies 2 officers, 1 paramedic killed in Burnsville, Minnesota; The suspect also died

Burnsville, Minn. – Two police officers and a paramedic were shot and killed Sunday morning in a suburb of the Twin Cities, authorities said, and the man who shot them has also died.

Superintendent Drew Evans with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Investigation said Burnsville police officers were called around 1:50 a.m. to a home at 33rd Avenue South and East 126th Street, just west of the Interstate 35E-Highway 77 interchange.

A suspect inside was reportedly armed, and several people were barricaded inside, including seven young children between the ages of 2 and 15.

Related: Who were the officers and paramedics shot and killed in Burnsville?

Paul Elmstrand, Matthew Rouge and Adam Finseth

City of Burnsville


Law enforcement “spent some time negotiating with this individual” before the suspect allegedly opened fire on officers, Evans said.

Burnsville city officials identified the victims as officers Paul Elmstrand and Matthew Rouge and firefighter/paramedic Adam Finseth. Sergeant Adam Medleycott with BPD was also shot but is expected to survive.

The suspect, who has not been identified, died around 8 a.m. and the family left the home shortly after.

Evans said the timing of the shooting and details of the exchange are unclear at this point in the investigation.

“It's a terrible day for the city of Burnsville, for all the residents,” Evans said.

Fallen first responders

Elmstrand, 27, joined the Burnsville Police Department in 2017 and was promoted in 2019, city officials said.

Rouge, 27, joined the force in 2020.

Finseth, 40, has been a fire and SWAT paramedic with the city since 2019. Fire Chief BJ Jungman says Finseth previously worked with the fire departments in Savage and Hastings.

read more: Five Minnesota police officers have been shot and killed in the line of duty since 2015


Law enforcement discusses the killings of 3 Burnsville first responders

Medlicott has been with BPD for nine years and five months.

Police Chief Tanya Schwartz says her department is “hurting.”

“Today, three members of our team made the ultimate sacrifice for this community. They are heroes,” Schwartz said. “Every day we pray for them to go home to their families. That didn't happen today. We are heartbroken. We need time to be together. Our families need time to grieve.”

Jungman says Sunday was the toughest day the city has ever seen.

“It's a sad day and we're all grieving and we're all trying to understand what happened and why,” Jungman said.

read more: Five Minnesota police officers have been shot and killed in the line of duty since 2015

Neighbors describe the scene

Jason Schock said he started seeing a large police and SWAT presence in his Burnsville neighborhood at 2 a.m., but things escalated three hours later at 5 a.m.

“I heard a loud explosion, which I immediately turned off a motor like a firecracker. But a minute later I heard another, followed shortly by continuous gunfire, very fast,” said Skog. “Then I immediately knew something bad was going on.”

Skog wasn't sure exactly where the gunfire was coming from, but he knew it was near his home.

“Shortly after that, we got a phone call from the police department, shelter in place, go to your basement and take shelter,” Skog said.

Dylan Follin also lives in this area. The father of two was shocked by what happened, especially after learning that a family was under siege at home at the time of the shooting.

“It's a tragedy, and I have to explain to my daughter now what happened today, and it's just the thought of those kids, that's what hits me, and my heart goes out to the families of those who responded,” Foline said.

The street was closed to all but law enforcement and homeowners throughout Sunday.

Hundreds of first responders pay their respects to the victims

Police and first responders from several cities gathered Sunday afternoon at Hennepin Healthcare in downtown Minneapolis to show support. Being a level-one trauma center, injured officers are often taken to the hospital.

Related: Hundreds line Twin Cities streets to honor 3 Burnsville first responders killed in the line of duty

Their caskets, draped in American flags, were carried in vans outside the hospital as a crowd of law enforcement stopped to salute them.

Doctors, nurses and other hospital staff lined up in the air to see them. Police, fire and paramedic vehicles stood nearby as the vans took off downtown.

WCCO


Gov. Tim Walls reacts

Support and condolences from Minnesota state leaders and other law enforcement agencies Pouring on social media.

“We should never take for granted the bravery and sacrifices our first responders make every day,” Walls said in a statement. “Today, the families of these public servants received a call they knew was possible, but hoped would never come. My heart goes out to those grieving families — the state of Minnesota stands ready to help in any way we can. This is a tragic loss. Our state.”

Walls ordered flags to be flown at half-staff beginning Monday at sunrise. A vigil for the victims was held Sunday evening at Burnsville City Hall.

Related: Support is pouring in on social media after 2 officers, a paramedic, were killed in Burnsville, Minnesota.

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