Suspects accused of killing MSP trooper ID'd - WNEM TV 5


Suspects accused of killing MSP trooper ID'd

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Trooper Paul Butterfield Trooper Paul Butterfield

The suspects accused in the death of a Michigan State Police trooper who was shot during a traffic stop and later died in surgery have been identified.

Family members say Eric Knysz and his wife Sarah have been arrested, accused of killing trooper Paul Butterfield.

The shooting happened just before 6:30 p.m. Monday night near Ludington, in Mason County.

Investigators say trooper Butterfield stopped a vehicle and then was shot in the head.

He was taken to a nearby hospital where he later died at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City during emergency surgery.

Two hours later, police found the two suspects at a gas station in the town of Wellston. When police approached them, Knysz pointed a gun at the officers.

Police shot Knysz, who was taken to a hospital with nonlife threatening injuries. He is still in the hospital recovering from his injuries.

Sarah Knysz was also taken into custody. WOOD-TV out of Grand Rapids is reporting that Sarah is from Shiawassee County. Neither of the suspects have been formally charged.

MSP Rockford Post Commander Lt. Chris McIntyre held a press conference regarding the incident Tuesday morning. McIntyre said, "Butterfield did everything right, if he hadn't done all of the right things regarding the incident, we would still be searching for the suspects right now."

Butterfield is a 1988 graduate of Bridgeport High School and was a 1987 Class A State Cross Country Champion.

Butterfield had been with the MSP for 14 years and worked at the MSP detachment in Hart. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and had recently become engaged to be married.

Gov. Rick Snyder says the death of a Michigan state trooper is a "grim reminder" of the dangers involved with protecting the public.

The governor released a statement early Tuesday, hours after Trooper Paul Butterfield was fatally shot during a traffic stop in western Michigan.

In the statement, Snyder says Michigan residents "realize the extraordinary difficulty of" officer's jobs "and the sacrifices they make for us."

Snyder says "a tragic event like this shakes us all, but it also bolsters our resolve to make our streets and our neighborhoods safer."

The governor is ordering flags be lowered to half staff to honor trooper Butterfield. Governor Snyder says flags will remain at half staff until his funeral.

Funeral services have not been announced.

The shooting is under investigation.

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