April 24, 1939 – December 31, 1971
Tprs. Gary T. Rampy and Charles B. Stark were shot and killed during the traffic stop of a suspected drunk driver.
At 2:30 a.m., the officers resumed patrol following a coffee break with fellow troopers from another patrol car. They had been discussing drunk drivers. At 2:55 a.m., a citizen called the post advising that the officers had been shot. It is theorized that at 2:50 a.m., the troopers’ attention was drawn to a vehicle making a u-turn in front of them. It was later learned that when the officers signaled the vehicle to stop, the driver obtained a gun from the back seat and placed it in his waistband.
When the officers approached the car, the driver was unable to produce an operator’s license and was taken back to the patrol car by one of the troopers. While at the patrol car, the suspect apparently got the drop on Trooper Rampy. Trooper Stark was then called back to the patrol car and he, too, was disarmed.
The suspect then shot both officers. Although pronounced dead on arrival at a nearby hospital, both troopers died as they fell beside their patrol car. Nearby residents heard the shooting and called the post. The officers that had just completed the coffee break with the mortally wounded troopers were less than one mile from the scene, and arrived in time to observe the suspect vehicle as it was leaving the area. Shots fired at the fleeing car had no effect. During the chase, information was given to the post reference the fallen officers and an ambulance was sent. A shotgun blast was fired, striking the suspect vehicle, and the driver stopped. He fled on foot after attempting to fire at the pursuing troopers. One of the officers chased the suspect on foot and ordered him to stop. After repeated warnings, the suspect was fired upon and killed.
It was learned that the suspect was wanted in Tennessee for parole violations, had been linked with several armed robberies, and had killed one person in a drug store hold up.
Trooper Rampy was the 26th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.
Trooper Stark was the 27th MSP officer to die in the line of duty.