Officer Dragged on Minnesota Freeway in Deadly Traffic Stop, Police SayFRIDLEY, Minn., May 9 (UPI) — A Minneapolis area police officer was hospitalized Saturday after a traffic stop went bad on Interstate 694 and he was dragged along the freeway, authorities said.
The officer, who was part of a traffic enforcement unit, pulled over a driver at about 11 p.m. local time Friday near the town of Fridley, a Twin Cities suburb.
Investigators say at some point during the stop, a physical altercation occurred and the officer unsuccessfully tried to subdue the man with a stun gun. The suspect then attempted to drive off and dragged the officer for a distance on the highway, CBS Minnesota reported.
As he was being dragged, the officer pulled his sidearm in an effort to get the driver to stop and ended up shooting him, officials said. The vehicle ran off the highway, through a fence and came to rest in a parking lot.
“In an attempt to get away from the vehicle, the officer discharged his weapon and a male individual is deceased,” Fridley’s director of public safety, Don Abbott, said.
The officer broke free from the vehicle before it drove off the freeway. He was taken to a hospital where he was treated and released.
Authorities did not release the motorist’s name or the name of the officer, but did say he is a nine-year veteran of the Lino Lakes, Minn. Police Department.
Westbound I-694 was closed for several hours overnight as investigators processed the scene. The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is heading the investigation. The Anoka County Sheriff’s Office, Lino Lakes police, Fridley police and Minnesota State Patrol are assisting in the probe, KARE-TV reported.
Lino Lakes, located about 15 miles northeast of Fridley, provided a few of its officers for a multi-agency task force assigned to traffic detail in the area Friday night, looking for impaired drivers.
The motorist was reportedly stopped for speeding and was also suspected of driving while intoxicated. He also had at least one outstanding arrest warrant, investigators said.