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Police: Man fatally shot himself after exchanging gunfire with officers

Minneapolis police said officers were responding to a 911 hang-up call when they entered a home and were confronted by an armed man, now identified as Brian Bertram.

MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating a man's death after Minneapolis police responded to a 911 hang-up call on Tuesday night.

At a press conference Wednesday afternoon, Minneapolis Community Safety Commissioner Dr. Cedric Alexander echoed that police were dispatched to a house in the 3400 block of 5th Street NE just before 5:30 p.m. on Sept. 20 after someone called 911.

When they arrived, people inside the house told officers to go to a back door. Finding the back door unlocked, police said they announced their presence and entered the home.

Alexander said that based on preliminary information, officers heard cries for help coming from the front of the home, at which point they were confronted by a man with a gun.

Though he could not confirm who fired the first shots, Alexander said police and the man exchanged gunfire and the officers retreated from the home.

Soon after, someone inside the home told officers a man had shot himself. When officers re-entered the home, they found 53-year-old Brian Keith Bertram deceased. The Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office lists the cause of death as a shotgun wound to the head.  

A woman and two kids, a boy and a girl, were taken out of the home. Their names and ages have not been released. 

Police said an officer that fired his gun was taken to Hennepin Hospital to be treated for injuries sustained during the exchange, but was released later that night. Alexander said the officer may have been injured by some shrapnel but is OK.

When asked how closely the officers were to the man who had the gun, Alexander said early information indicates this was "very close contact," and that police and the armed man were probably within 10 feet of each other.

No one else was hurt, according to officials, and both officers were wearing body cameras that were on and active. Video from those cameras will be released following discussion with city attorney and BCA, Alexander said.

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