2 officers hurt in group home confrontation

Published 8:49 pm Thursday, July 19, 2018

SOUTH ST. PAUL — Two South St. Paul police officers were wounded Thursday in an exchange of gunfire with a group home resident in a quiet neighborhood.

While authorities initially said one officer was wounded, South St. Paul Police Chief William Messerich and Dakota County Sheriff Tim Leslie said at a news conference later Thursday that two officers suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

The officers went to the group home on a report of a missing resident, who then turned up and opened fire with a shotgun, Messerich said. He said the officers returned fire but did not hit the suspect, who dropped the gun and was arrested.

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“While our situation had the potential for a much more tragic outcome than it did, I’m grateful the injuries of our officers were not any worse than they are,” Messerich said.

One officer, an 11-year veteran, was in stable condition with a shoulder injury. The other, a six-year veteran, was hit in the leg but did not need hospitalization.

Stanley Young was delivering meals from a nonprofit to the group home when the shootout unfolded.

“No more than 5-6 feet away from me, this guy appears with a shotgun, fires two shots toward the officers” Young told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Young said the shooter appeared calm.

“It took me a moment to realize that was a shotgun in his hand. He didn’t look rattled or like ‘this is it for me,’” Young said.

The suspect is being held on suspicion of attempted murder.