Charges announced in Michigan State Police trooper murder

(WXYZ) - Charges have been announced in connection with the murder of a Michigan State Police trooper in Mason County during a traffic stop on Monday. 

Eric John Knysz, 19, is facing numerous charges including Homicide-Murder of Peace Officer. He is expected to be arraigned once he is released from the hospital. 

Sarah Renee Knysz, 20, was arraigned on a two-count felony complaint. She is charged with Accessory After the Fact and Unlawful Driving Away of an Automobile.  

The murder investigation is ongoing. 

Michigan State Police Lt. Mike Shaw says Tpr. Paul Butterfield was shot in the head. A passerby found the trooper on the ground a couple of minutes later. 

Butterfield was airlifted to Munson Hospital where he passed away during emergency surgery. 

"Tonight we lost a hero," said Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue , director of the MSP in a statement .  "The entire MSP family, as well as our greater law enforcement family, mourns alongside the Butterfields . Trooper Butterfield's sacrifice will never be forgotten; may he rest in peace."

Authorities exchanged gunfire with both of the suspects before taking them into custody. Eric was shot in the shoot-out and was transported to the hospital. 

Trooper Butterfield joined the Michigan State Police in 1999. He is also a veteran of the U.S. Army.

Governor Rick Snyder released the following statement early Tuesday morning:

"This senseless incident is a grim reminder that our brave public safety officers put their lives on the line every day when they go to work protecting Michiganders. They are heroes.

"Our hearts break when a Michigan State Police trooper, or any of our other police officers or firefighters, is killed in the line of duty. Their loss is unquestionably felt by their families as well as the communities they serve and our entire state. We realize the extraordinary difficulty of their jobs and the sacrifices they make for us.

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

"We thank Trooper Butterfield for his bravery, his service and his sacrifice. Our thoughts and prayers are with him, his family, friends, and colleagues."


 

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