Trooper Timothy J. O’Neill

Tpr. Timothy J. O’Neill died as a result of injuries sustained while patrolling on a motorcycle in Kent County on Thursday, September 20, 2017. At approximately 7:45 a.m., Trooper O’Neill was on patrol with his department-issued motorcycle when he was involved in a crash near the intersection of Wolverine Boulevard NE and Belding Road NE in Plainfield Township. Trooper O’Neill was taken to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids where he later passed away as a result of his injuries.

Trooper O’Neill joined the Michigan State Police in 2014, graduating as a member of the 126th Trooper Recruit School. He served at the Rockford Post and became a member of the Motor Unit in May 2017. Tpr. Timothy J. O’Neill was the 53rd Michigan State Police officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Chad H. Wolf

May 12, 1977 – August 28, 2015

Trooper Chad Wolf was killed when his motorcycle was struck by a vehicle.

Trooper Wolf was on motorcycle patrol and traveling northbound in the right lane of Dixie Highway and crossing over southbound I-75 when a vehicle towing an empty trailer traveling in the left lane quickly changed lanes in an attempt to access the I-75 entrance ramp. As the vehicle changed lanes, it struck Trooper Wolf’s motorcycle. Trooper Wolf was dragged for several miles on I-75 before the driver pulled over at a rest area.

Trooper Wolf served with the Michigan State Police for seven years. He is survived by his wife and four children.

Trooper Chad H. Wolf is the 52nd Michigan State Police officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Paul K. Butterfield II

February 16, 1970 – September 9, 2013

On September 9, 2013, Tpr. Butterfield was shot and killed while making a traffic stop on Custer Road, near Townline Road, in Mason County, at approximately 6:20 pm.

A few minutes after radioing in the stop a citizen called 911 to report a trooper had been shot. Responding units located Tpr. Butterfield on the ground suffering from a gunshot wound to the head. He was flown to Munson Medical Center where he succumbed to his wounds while in surgery.

Trooper Paul Kenyon Butterfield II, age 43, joined the Michigan State Police in 1999 as part of the 118th Trooper Recruit School. His assignments included the Manistee and Hart Posts. Trooper Butterfield was a U.S. Army veteran and had served with the Michigan State Police for 14 years.

Trooper Paul K. Butterfield II is the 51st Michigan State Police officer to die in the line of duty.


Follow the link below to view the Michigan Trooper tribute issue honoring Tpr. Paul Butterfield:

Tpr. Butterfield Tribute Issue

Trooper Jeffrey J. Werda

February 1, 1968 – April 6, 2011

Trooper Jeffrey J. Werda died as a result of injuries sustained from a roll-over crash while enroute to a vehicle pursuit in Saginaw County on Wednesday, April 6, 2011.

At approximately 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 6, Saginaw County Central Dispatch put out a call that deputies from the Saginaw County Sheriff’s Office were involved in a vehicle pursuit in the southwest corner of Saginaw County. Trooper Werda was in the village of Birch Run and began heading in the direction of the pursuit with lights and siren activated to assist the deputies.

While heading westbound on Birch Run Road near Morrish Road in Taymouth Township, Trooper Werda lost control of his patrol vehicle, left the roadway and the vehicle rolled several times.

A passerby came upon the crash and reported the incident to Saginaw County Central Dispatch. Emergency responders arrived at the scene and transported Trooper Werda to Covenant Hospital in Saginaw. He was pronounced dead on arrival.

Trooper Jeffrey J. Werda is the 50th Michigan State Police officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Kevin M. Marshall

November 14, 1969 – July 7, 2003

Trooper Kevin M. Marshall died as a result of gunshot wounds he received while making a tactical entry into a residence of a barricaded gunman. This incident occurred near the city of Fremont, in Newaygo County, on Monday, July 7, 2003 at approximately 4:00pm.

During the evening hours of July 6, 2003, officers from the Hesperia Police Department and the Newaygo County Sheriff Department, attempted to serve a felony warrant for accosting children for immoral purposes on 40 year old Scott Allen Woodring, of Fremont, Michigan. Woodring then barricaded himself in his home. The Michigan State Police Emergency Support Team was requested and responded to the scene.

When Emergency Support team members were attempting to provide communication equipment, the suspect fired two shots at the officers. After 14 hours of negotiations failed, a State Police Emergency Support entry team made a tactical entry into the residence. Trooper Marshall was the lead officer in this team, which was met with gunfire as entry was made. Multiple .223 rifle rounds struck the ballistic shield he was carrying, with four rounds striking Trooper Marshall. Two other members of the team were also struck. One received a non-life threatening injury and the other was unhurt, having been struck in the helmet.

Trooper Marshall was transported to Gerber Hospital in Fremont before being airlifted to Spectrum Hospital in Grand Rapids, where he died during surgery.

Although the house was surrounded by law enforcement officers, the suspect was able to escape undetected after the shooting. A cache of weapons and survival gear were found in the rubble of his house, which caught fire and burned during the standoff. A massive manhunt ensued and a first degree warrant for murder was issued for Scott Allen Woodring by the Newaygo County Prosecutor.

On Sunday, July 13, 2003, the Michigan State Police received a tip that Woodring was in the area of Maple Island (M-120) and 64th Street in Newaygo County. Eight members of the State Police Emergency Support Team were assembled and responded to that location. They located the suspect in a vehicle behind a house. Emergency Support team members ordered Woodring to remain in the vehicle. Despite these orders, Woodring exited the vehicle armed with an assault rifle and turned toward the officers. Woodring was subsequently shot by Emergency Support team members. He was pronounced dead at the scene as a result of his wounds.

Trooper Marshall, a native of Sterling Heights, was a member of the 111th Michigan State Police Recruit School and an eight year veteran of the department. He enlisted with the department on January 15, 1995, and upon completion of recruit training, was assigned to the Newaygo post. He joined the department’s Emergency Support Team in 2002. Trooper Marshall was posthumously awarded the Michigan State Police Medal of Valor for his actions in this incident.

Trooper Marshall was earlier presented with the Michigan State Police Bravery Award in May, 2003 for his courageous actions in subduing a suicidal woman who was attempting to stab both herself and her boyfriend.

Trooper Marshall was a graduate of Wayne State University, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice.

Trooper Marshall is survived by his wife, Angela and two children.

Trooper Kevin M. Marshall is the 49th Michigan State Police officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Rick L. Johnson

January 16, 1965 – May 6, 2000

Trooper Rick L. Johnson died as a result of injuries sustained when he was struck by a vehicle while conducting a traffic stop on I-94 in Van Buren County, Saturday, May 6, 2000.

At 7:00 a.m. Saturday, May 6, Trooper Johnson reported for duty at the Paw Paw Post. He was assigned to the day shift.

At approximately 11:56 a.m., Trooper Johnson stopped a motor vehicle on westbound I-94, one quarter of a mile east of M-51, for defective equipment. Trooper Johnson stopped the vehicle, occupied by two subjects, on the north shoulder of the roadway.

Trooper Johnson approached the stopped vehicle on the passenger side, making contact with the driver and other occupant of the vehicle. After speaking with the occupants, Trooper Johnson started to return to his patrol vehicle. As Trooper Johnson was walking back between the patrol vehicle and the vehicle he had stopped, a third vehicle drove off the roadway and struck the rear of his patrol unit.

The impact of the collision first pinned Trooper Johnson between the two vehicles, and then trapped him underneath his patrol unit as it spun into the travel lanes. Trooper Johnson was extricated and treated at the scene by emergency personnel, then flown by Air Care to Bronson Hospital in the city of Kalamazoo. Shortly after arrival at the hospital, Trooper Johnson was pronounced dead due to injuries sustained in the crash.

The driver of the vehicle which struck Trooper Johnson was a 21 year old female. She had reportedly been distracted by actions within her vehicle. She had driven off the roadway, onto the shoulder before striking the patrol vehicle. In addition to herself, other occupants of the vehicle included her mother and two young children. The occupants of the vehicle were treated and released at Bronson Hospital.

After review by the Van Buren County Prosecutor Office, the driver of the vehicle was charged with Negligent Homicide. She was later arraigned on the charge at the 7th East District Court in Paw Paw.

Ironically, just the day before his fatal accident, Trooper Johnson had successfully talked a suicidal man out of jumping off of an overpass just a mile away from what would become the scene of his own death.

Trooper Rick L. Johnson is the 48th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Frederick A. Hardy

November 27, 1962 – November 6, 1999

Tpr. Frederick A. Hardy died as a result of injuries sustained when he was struck by a passing motor vehicle. He was exiting his patrol unit to conduct a traffic stop during the early morning hours of Saturday, November 6, 1999.

At 8:00 p.m. on Friday, November 5, 1999, he reported for duty at the Detroit Freeway Post. Trooper Hardy was assigned to work the midnight shift, 8:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m., with partner Tpr. LaVern Willett.

At approximately 12:30 a.m., Saturday, November 6, Troopers Hardy and Willett stopped a motor vehicle for speeding on eastbound I-96 between Livernois and Joy Road. The vehicle had been paced travelling 80mph in a 55mph zone. As Trooper Hardy exited the patrol vehicle to conduct the traffic stop, he was struck by a passing vehicle.

The vehicle, also eastbound, had driven off the roadway, striking the side of the patrol unit. After striking the patrol unit, the vehicle continued eastbound striking Trooper Hardy. The stopped vehicle, occupied by two citizens, was not struck.

The vehicle, after striking Trooper Hardy, continued eastbound on I-96, failing to stop at the crash scene. Lifesaving efforts were administered to the fallen trooper, who was transported to Detroit Receiving Hospital. Shortly after arriving at the hospital, Trooper Hardy was pronounced dead due to injuries sustained in the crash.

The driver of the suspected vehicle, a 30 year old male, was the only occupant of the vehicle. The Detroit Police Department arrested the suspected driver at approximately 2:30 p.m. on November 6, 1999, at his place of employment. They received a telephone tip leading them to the hit and run vehicle. The suspect’s girlfriend’s sister, from whom he had borrowed the vehicle, contacted the Detroit Police Department after hearing news reports about the crash and a description of the vehicle.

The suspected driver of the vehicle was arraigned on November 9, 1999, in the 36th District Court in Detroit on the charges of Operating Under the Influence of Liquor (OUIL) Causing Death, Manslaughter With A Motor Vehicle, Driving With License Suspended (DWLS) Causing Death, DWLS Second Conviction, and Fleeing the Scene of an Accident Causing Death.

Trooper Frderick A. Hardy was the 47th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Manuel H. Fields

April 25, 1960 – August 27, 1994

Tpr. Manuel H. Fields died as a result of injuries sustained when he was struck by a passing motor vehicle while standing along the shoulder of the roadway during a traffic stop.

On August 27, 1994, Trooper Fields reported to the Jackson Post to start an overtime traffic enforcement assignment. Trooper Fields had just completed a temporary assignment as an instructor for the 109th Trooper Recruit School. Trooper Fields was also scheduled to return to the Training Academy within the week to begin instructing in the 110th Trooper Recruit School.

At approximately 5:50 p.m., while patrolling in patrol unit 418, Trooper Fields conducted a traffic stop on a 1977 Olds Cutlass on the north shoulder of westbound I-94 east of US-127 (South). Trooper Fields approached the vehicle, occupied by six male subjects, and made contact with the driver. Trooper Fields had obtained the operator’s license, vehicle registration, and had requested the proof of vehicle insurance from the driver.

As the driver of the vehicle reached to the glovebox to obtain the insurance information, another westbound vehicle crossed the fog line traveling onto the north shoulder of the roadway. Upon crossing the fog line, the vehicle struck and grazed the front corner of the police vehicle, then struck the stopped vehicle, before striking Trooper Fields.

The striking vehicle then continued westbound on I-94, failing to stop at the crash scene. Numerous citizens witnessed the crash and stopped to render aid to the fallen trooper. However, his injuries were fatal and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the striking vehicle, a seventy year old female subject, was the only occupant of the vehicle. The driver drove to her sister’s residence in Jackson and notified police that she had been involved in a collision. The driver reported she felt she had been involved in a collision with a sign.

It is unknown why Trooper Fields had stopped the vehicle on I-94. The driver of the stopped vehicle stated that the trooper was struck before he was able to advise him why he had been stopped.  The driver of the striking vehicle was subsequently charged by the Jackson County Prosecutors Office in a two count warrant: Negligent Homicide and Leaving the Scene of a Fatal Accident.

The traffic crash occurred in Leoni Township, Jackson County, and was investigated by the Jackson County Sheriff Department.

Tpr. Manuel H. Fields was the 46th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Bryon S. Egelski

January 10, 1964 – July 11, 1994

Tpr. Bryon S. Egelski died as a result of injuries sustained in a patrol car collision. The collision occurred while he was responding to the call of an injury traffic crash.

On July 11, Tprs. Bryon S. Egelski and Danielle Teunion-Smith, assigned to the St. Clair Post, reported to work for the midnight shift.

At approximately 11:35 p.m., while patrolling in car 237, the officers were dispatched by the St. Clair County Sheriff Department to respond to a rollover injury traffic crash. The location of the reported crash was Marine City Highway and Palms Road.

Patrol unit 237, driven by Trooper Egelski, was responding to the reported crash with the patrol unit emergency lights and equipment activated. Approximately two miles from where the troopers received the original dispatch call, they collided with another vehicle.

Patrol unit 237 was responding westbound on Davis Road as it approached the stop sign at the intersection of Range Road. As the patrol unit drove into the intersection, it was struck broadside by a vehicle traveling northbound on Range Road.

After impact both vehicles went off the roadway and a fire erupted. The impact pinned both troopers in the wreckage until they were extricated by emergency personnel.

Officer Gary Holowitz, Marysville Police Department, was just completing a traffic stop approximately 600 feet away from the intersection when the crash occurred. Officer Holowitz’s quick action in extinguishing the fire and rendering aid is believed to have saved the life of Trooper Teunion-Smith.

Troopers Egelski and Teunion-Smith were transported to Mercy Hospital in Port Huron. Trooper Egelski was pronounced dead shortly after arrival. Trooper Teunion-Smith sustained serious injuries and was hospitalized. She was released from the hospital and on April 30, 1998 retired from the Michigan State Police with a disability retirement.

The driver of the second vehicle was transported and treated at the hospital for minor injuries.

The traffic crash occurred in the city of Marysville and was investigated by the Marysville Police Department.

Trooper Egelski was the 45th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.

Trooper Byron J. Erickson

December 21, 1956 – July 31, 1993

Tpr. Byron J. Erickson died as a result of complications from injuries sustained in an automobile accident during the pursuit of a suspected stolen car.

On Friday, July 2, 1993, the Adrian Post received a tip that a stolen 1993 Ford Mustang was parked at a residence in the Ridgemont Subdivision of Tecumseh, north of Adrian. Driving the post detective’s unmarked car, Trooper Erickson responded to the area at approximately 4:40 p.m.

As Trooper Erickson entered the subdivision, he noticed the Mustang leaving the area. He began following the suspect and radioed for marked units to assist with a felony stop. Apparently, the suspect realized that a police car was following him, because Trooper Erickson radioed that the suspect suddenly took off at a high rate of speed. Trooper Erickson gave chase in order to keep the Mustang in sight for the responding patrol cars.
The chase lasted approximately five miles before Trooper Erickson lost control of his vehicle on Shepherd Road in Lenawee County. Trooper Erickson suffered severe spinal injury when his car flipped and rolled over. It is believed that Trooper Erickson lost control when he took evasive action to avoid hitting a citizen’s car, which he suddenly came upon after cresting a hill.

The suspect continued on, but was subsequently arrested following another chase involving several police agencies.

Trooper Erickson was flown to University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor for surgery. On Saturday, July 31, 1993, at approximately 3:30 a.m., Trooper Erickson passed away as a result of complications from his injuries.

Trooper Erickson was the 44th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.