Western Wisconsin Deputy Killed in Shooting ID’D (Update)
Glenwood, WI (KROC-AM News)-Officials have identified the St. Croix County Sheriff’s deputy killed in a western Wisconsin shooting Saturday evening.
A news release issued Sunday afternoon by the Wisconsin Department of Justice says the deputy responded to the report of a drunk driver around 6:15 p.m. in Glenwood Township, which is about 60 miles east of Minneapolis. The deputy encountered the suspect driver outside of his vehicle and other people at the scene who had stopped to check on the driver.
The news release says deputy Kaitie Leising asked the driver, 34-year-old Jeremiah D. Johnson to perform a field sobriety test. Officials say Johnson was evasive and that he shot the 29-year-old deputy after quickly drawing a hand gun.
Deputy Leising returned three rounds but missed Johnson who fled into a wooded area, the news release says. The other people at the scene began rendering aid to the fallen deputy, who was transported to a nearby hospital where she died.
Officers from several agencies responded to the area to search for Johnson. About an hour after the fatal shooting, an officer reported seeing Johnson, hearing a gunshot, then seeing Johnson collapse. Officials say no law enforcement members fired a shot during the search for Johnson, who was found dead with a handgun near him.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation plans to forward the findings of the investigation to the St. Croix County District Attorney for review. The fatal shooting was captured by a body camera.
St. Croix County Sheriff Scott Knudson released a statement saying, “Our love and condolences go out to the family of Kaitie Leising and all of those she served. We, as a law enforcement family, will do everything possible to continue to provide comfort and support to her family. We will miss her infectious smile and personality. She will be missed by all she touched.”
Knudson says Deputy Leising is being escorted by law enforcement from the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office to a funeral home where deputies and officers will stand vigil by her side until services are completed. Funeral arrangements are pending.
Olmsted County Sheriff Kevin Torgerson and other law enforcement agencies in southeast Minnesota responded to the latest fatal shooting of a law officer.
Deputy Knudson had been with the St. Croix County Sheriff’s Office since 2022. She had previously served as a sheriff’s deputy in South Dakota for two years.
Last month Officer Emily Breidenbach of the Chetek Police Department and Hunter Scheel of the Cameron Police Department were killed in a shootout with a suspect in Chetek Wisconsin. About a week later, Pope County Sheriff’s deputy Josh Ownen was killed in a shootout with a suspect in western Minnesota.