The suspect in Wednesday morning’s Iowa killings has been taken into custody after he flagged down a natural resources officer.
Scott Michael Greene, 46, was arrested on Wednesday morning, just a few hours after the killings occurred. Greene is currently being held for allegedly shooting Urbandale police Officer Justin Martin and Des Moines police Sgt. Anthony “Tony” Beminio. According to CNN, the officers were shot as they sat in squad vehicles at different intersections roughly 2 miles apart.
Martin’s body was discovered seated in his squad car at an Urbandale intersection just northwest of Des Moines at around 1:05 a.m. after residents reported hearing a gun fire.
Around twenty minutes following the discovery of Martin’s body, officers responded to a second 911 call. Officers arrived at another intersection in Des Moines to find Beminio shot in his squad car. Beminio later died at a hospital.
Currently, Greene has not been officially charged with the killings, although he is Urbandale police’s only current suspect.
CNN reported that Des Moines police Sgt. Paul Parizek spoke to the press while holding back tears and stating, “On the surface right now … it doesn’t look like there was any interaction between these officers and whoever the coward is that shot them while they sat in their cars.”
Parizek continued, saying, “In all appearances it looks … that these officers were ambushed. These guys were gunned down sitting in their car, doing nothing wrong.”
Later Parizek was quoted telling the media that Beminio was, “a great friend to a lot of us. We had high expectations (for) his future, and it’s tragic it’s been cut short.”
Police believe that Greene’s hatred towards officials began two weeks prior when he was asked to leave a high school football game by officers after he waved a confederate flag in the faces of “people of color”. CNN reported, however, that after Greene was escorted out, he continued his “demonstration” on public sidewalks.
Greene allegedly saw this as an infringement on his rights. Urbandale police Chief Ross McCarty commented on the event by stating, “He said he was invoking his First Amendment rights, and we were trampling on them.”
Many believe Greene saw this “infringement of his rights” as a personal insult which later resulted in the killing of the both innocent officers on duty.
Wednesday’s killings bring the number of police officers fatally shot on duty to a staggering 52, according to CNN. This is reportedly the highest recording of police casualties in the line of duty in the United States and Puerto Rico since 2011, when 73 officers were shot dead.
(photo provided by cnn.com)