Murder charges filed against alleged cop shooter

Prosecutors have charged a man suspected of killing a Mendota Heights police officer with first-degree murder.

MINNEAPOLIS - Prosecutors have charged a man with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the fatal shooting of a Mendota Heights Police Officer. .

A criminal complaint filed Friday also charges 39-year-old Brian George Fitch Sr. with three counts of attempted murder and a number of counts of assault in Ramsey County for shooting at police officers during a standoff eight hours after the killing.

Fitch faces two counts of first-degree murder in Dakota County in the shooting death of Officer Scott Patrick Wednesday.

Patrick was killed during a traffic stop at Dodd Road and Smith Avenue South. The criminal complaint filed against Fitch says he shot the officer three times, once each in the leg, abdomen and head. Prosecutors have documented that Fitch then drove to the St. Paul home of an acquaintance, told them to hide his car and asked if he could buy their vehicle. They said no, but agreed to lend it to him for a few days.

It was in that vehicle, a Hyundai Vera Cruz, that Fitch was spotted Wednesday night at Rice Street and Sycamore. Law enforcement hemmed in the vehicle, and when one officer got out Fitch allegedly opened fire. A number of officers shot back, reportedly striking Fitch eight times. He was taken to Regions Hospital in St. Paul. While a St. Paul Police Officer was standing over him at the hospital, Fitch reportedly looked at him and said "Just to let you know, I hate cops and I'm guilty."

He is undergoing abdominal surgery Friday afternoon, and will be booked into jail as soon as he recovers.

A woman in the vehicle with Fitch, 36-year-old Kelly Hardy, was also shot.

"Officer Patrick had a strong passion to protect and serve his community and he did so with honor and distinction," said Dakota County Attorney Jim Backstrom. "He will be greatly missed."


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