‘He’s got a rifle’: Bodycam shows shootout that killed 2 Wis. officers; report details shooting

On April 8, 2022, two police officers in northwestern Wisconsin tragically lost their lives in a deadly shootout with a armed suspect. Emily Breidenbach, a 32-year-old officer with the Chetek Police Department, and Hunter Scheel, a 32-year-old Cameron police officer, were gunned downed after stopping a vehicle driven by Glenn D. Perry.

Background on Officers Breidenbach and Scheel

Officer Emily Breidenbach had served with the Chetek Police Department for two years at the time of her death. She was raised in the area and graduated from Chetek High School. Friends and family described her as bright, energetic, and committed to public service.

Officer Hunter Scheel joined the Cameron Police Department in August 2021 after serving as an officer in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. He was engaged to be married just one week after he was killed. Scheel was known as an outstanding officer devoted to protecting his community.

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Events Leading Up To the Fatal Encounter

Perry’s Mental Health Decline

According to the investigative report, Glenn Perry had a history of mental illness and demonstrated a severe decline in recent years. He was hospitalized twice for mental health issues in 2010 and 2011. Records also showed Perry was subject to a mental health commitment order in 2011 that prohibited him from possessing firearms. Those close to him noticed his deteriorating mental state after a divorce.

Child Support Warrant For Perry’s Arrest

In March 2022, a warrant was issued for Perry’s arrest due to his failure to pay child support. When he did not appear at a scheduled court hearing, the Barron County Sheriff’s Office began actively searching for Perry to execute the warrant.

Details of the Shootout

Breidenbach Stops Perry’s Vehicle

On April 8, Officer Breidenbach spotted Perry’s vehicle and conducted a traffic stop. She radioed for backup, aware of a warning about Perry’s unstable mental state. As she approached the vehicle, Perry opened fire on her with an AR-15 rifle.

Perry Opens Fire with AR-15 Rifle

According to investigators, Perry immediately began firing on Officer Breidenbach as soon as he opened the door, striking her twice before she could return fire. Breidenbach was able to get off two shots before collapsing.

Officer Scheel Joins and Exchanges Gunfire

Responding to Breidenbach’s call for backup, Officer Scheel arrived on scene to find her shot. Taking cover behind his patrol vehicle, Scheel exchanged gunfire with Perry. Scheel shot nine rounds from his .40 caliber handgun.

Perry Finishes Off Scheel At Close Range

During the shootout, Officer Scheel was struck multiple times by Perry’s AR-15 fire and fell to the ground severely wounded. Perry then approached Scheel at close range as he lay defenseless and fired two final fatal shots into the officer.

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Aftermath and Investigation

Perry Succumbs to Leg Wound

Although not immediately fatal, Glenn Perry suffered a gunshot wound to his right leg during the exchange of fire. He made his way back to his vehicle and leaned against it, still armed. Perry eventually collapsed and succumbed to his leg injury before other officers arrived.

Investigators Find 10 Shots Fired from AR-15

Investigators determined that Perry fired at least 10 rounds from his AR-15 during the shootout. They also recovered a loaded 9mm handgun from his person. In total, 21 shots were exchanged between Perry, Breidenbach, and Scheel.

Bravery and Sacrifice of Officers Praised

Barron County District Attorney Brian Wright concluded the investigative report by commending Officers Breidenbach and Scheel for their courageous actions and ultimate sacrifice. He stated their bravery epitomized the commitment and character of law enforcement officers nationwide.

Lingering Danger Posed By Perry

The report highlighted the ongoing risk posed by Perry even after being wounded. As he leaned against his vehicle after the shootout, motorists continued driving past the scene unaware of the active threat. Perry remained armed and would have likely fired upon responding officers and innocent passersby had he not succumbed to his injury. The situation could have quickly escalated into further loss of life.

Conclusion and Reflections

The deadly shootout on April 8, 2022 cut two promising young lives and careers short. It also provides sobering insight into the inherent dangers law enforcement officers face each day. Officers Breidenbach and Scheel knew the risks, yet still ran towards trouble to keep their communities safe. Their brave sacrifice will not be forgotten. The incident also reveals how quickly routine encounters can turn deadly when unstable or violent individuals like Glenn Perry gain access to high-powered weaponry. It is a reminder of the need for sensible gun regulation and improved access to mental health resources. Though words cannot mend the grief of losing Officers Breidenbach and Scheel, they will be remembered as heroes whose courageous service and ultimate sacrifice saved countless other lives.

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FAQs:

What were the names of the officers killed?

The officers killed were Emily Breidenbach of the Chetek Police Department and Hunter Scheel of the Cameron Police Department.

How old were the officers?

Both Officer Breidenbach and Officer Scheel were 32 years old at the time they were killed.

How many shots were fired during the shootout?

Investigators determined at least 21 shots were exchanged during the incident. Perry fired 10 rounds from an AR-15 rifle, Breidenbach fired twice from her service weapon, and Scheel fired nine rounds.

What weapon did Glenn Perry use?

Perry used an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle to shoot the officers. He also had a loaded 9mm handgun on his person.

What was Perry’s mental health history?

Perry had a history of mental illness and declined severely in recent years. He was hospitalized twice and subject to a commitment order banning him from having firearms.

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