Skip to comments.Coon Rapids man charged with shooting officer in road rage
Posted on 12/20/2007 7:56:08 AM PST by jdege
Coon Rapids man charged with shooting officer in road rage
The Anoka County courthouse revealed documents Wednesday that charge 35-year-old Martin Scott Treptow with the shooting of a Robbinsdale Police officer.
Treptow, of Coon Rapids, claims Officer Landen Beard was not wearing a uniform at the time he forced Treptow off of the road on June 7. Beard supposedly was driving an unmarked car. When the two men confronted each other, Treptow claimed Beard pointed a gun at his wife.
"We were about three feet away from each other and he pointed the gun at my wife. It was a tough situation, but I couldnt drive away at that particular moment and I had to protect my family," said Treptow.
Treptow, a trained security guard, shot the Officer Beard in both of his legs.
A grand jury charged Treptow with drive by shooting, reckless discharge of a firearm and terroristic threats.
"He was just scared and he just did what he thought was the right thing to do at that moment to protect his family," said Treptows attorney, Kurt Glaser.
Glaser said Treptow has a strong case, if it ever reaches a courtroom.
"Hes faced with some other person whos driving crazy down the road, confronts him, and pulls out a gun. He did exactly what he thoughtand he was trainedto do," said Glaser.
Beard will appear in court Thursday.
If convicted of all charges, Treptow faces a maximum sentence of 17 years in prison.
Critical point that isn't stressed in the story - Treptow was the first to call 911. Immediately after the shooting, he pulled into the parking lot of a convenience store, called 911, and waited for the police.
The recording of the call gave no indication that he knew that Beard was a police officer. Damned-near every witness with a cell phone called 911, and none of them gave any indication that they thought that Beard was a police officer.
Whatever it was that began this, out on the highway, Beard didn't call it in, he didn't turn on his siren or lights. He followed Treptow off the highway, pulled up alongside him on the shoulder, as Treptow was blocked at a stoplight, got out of his car and approached Treptow's, and pulled his gun rather than his badge.
There are some side issues in this case - why was Beard in Coon Rapids in the first place, when he was supposedly on-duty. Beard lives in Coon Rapids, but he works for the Robbinsdale PD - 10-15 miles away. Beard is married to a staffer for Fox 9 news, and a Fox 9 reporter apparently violated privacy laws in improperly obtaining background info on Treptow's wife. But mostly, these just confuse the issue.
All of this was six months ago, and it's taken this long for the prosecutor to decide what to do. Clearly he's decided to file multiple felony charges in hopes that Treptow will plead out. Keeping this from going to trial is essential to the process of sweeping the whole thing under the rug.
This IS a road-rage case, I think. But it sounds like it’s the cop with he road-rage.
If a cop doesn't act like a cop then he shouldn't expect to hide behind the badge and be treated like one.
These charges are a travesty. The cop was in the wrong. They need to just let this one go.
Based on what's written here, this guy did nothing wrong and in fact acted in self-defense or defense of another (his wife).
Under the new bill, this guy could have his guns taken away, lose his job (he has a security job), and be forced to spend lots of time and money getting it erased from his record.
If what is being said in the article is correct, it looks like the guy was acting in self defense. How ironic that the Fox newsbabe did what she did, to further harm the guy.
Jackass punk cop thought it was Training Day.
Yep. This one is seriously messed up.
bkmarking these links for later.
If what is being said in the article is correct, it looks like the guy was acting in self defense. How ironic that the Fox newsbabe did what she did, to further harm the guy.There is a legal defense fund, details are in the commentaries I linked in comment #1
Thanks for filling in the blanks. I hope Mr. Treptow prevails on this - he & his wife have already been through enough...
The headline is misleading - it clearly implies that the shooter was the one with "road rage." From the article itself, he was calm and in control, did exactly what he should have and the officer was out of control.
A grand jury charged Treptow with drive by shooting, reckless discharge of a firearm and terroristic threats.
This ought to send a chill down all our spines.
"Terroristic threats"? What the hell does that mean? This is exactly the kind of abuse of the word that we feared.
That term has been defined as law for decades in some states. It's not a new phenomenon
"Terroristic threats"? What the hell does that mean?Apparently, it means he honked his horn and gave Beard the finger.
The cop needs to be the one facing charges.
I hope Treptow fights it and it ends up before a jury. Beard was wrong - dead wrong - to display a weapon without adequate identification and was justly shot to diffuse the situation.
Police, without proper identification, have NO MORE AUTHORITY to stop, question, nor apprehend anyone than Citizen Joe has.
Some members of some PD’s have this fatal thinking the Patriot Act gives them unchecked authority over citizens. If uncorrected soon, it will become increasingly disasterous to both police and citizens, just as this incident indicates.
The cop is facing charges. We just don’t know what they are, yet.
Do we know that the cop is facing charges or are we waiting to see if any charges are announced against him?
The cop learns his fate today as the records involving him are unsealed.
Shades of KGB attitude right there if true...
Meanwhile, the grand jury no-billed Treptow on the most serious charge - aggravated assault - and the judge released Treptow without bail.
I can't think of many instances in which someone shot a cop and then was released without bail.
But then, the day of the shooting the Coon Rapids police let Treptow go that same day, and didn't even take action to have his carry permit suspended.
It's clear that there are a lot of people involved in this case who don't think that Treptow is a danger to the community.
The 900 Pound Gorilla
Last June, Martin Treptow shot Landen Beard.
Beard - an undercover Robbinsdale cop - was alleged (by Treptow and eyewitnesses) to have been in a road-raging snit.
The rest of the story is very much in contention, although according to witnesses it seems to have gone a little something like this:
1. Treptow, in an SUV with his pregnant wife and two small children, and Beard, in a sporty little red car, exchanged gestures, words, and aggressive maneuvering.
2. Treptow pulls up to a stoplight - behind another car, in the right lane.
3. Beard pulls up next to him, on the right.
4. Words are exchanged. What words? Were not entirely sure, but more on that later.
5. Someone pulls a gun. Who drew first - Treptow, in his SUV full of kids, boxed in at a stoplight, or Landen Beard? We dont know - not officially. More below.
6. Martin Treptow fired three shots, wounding Beard about as superficially as is possible under the circumstances.
7. He then drove to a convenience store and reported the shooting, per state law in self-defense cases, apparently not knowing that Beard was an undercover cop.
8. Dozens of cops from every possible jurisdiction (rumors that cops sped in from Inver Grove Heights and Owatonna are apparently unfounded) responded, apparently believing Martin Treptow was John Dillinger sprung from the grave.
9. Treptow was arrested, and taken to the Anoka County jail, where
10. the next day, he was released. No arraignment, no charges. He didnt even have his Concealed Carry permit revoked - which would have taken the Anoka sheriff five minutes, and is basically pro forma in cases when theres the faintest doubt. Which - after a day of interviewing witnesses, there apparently was not.
11. And from that first 911 call, at 37 seconds after 2:36PM on June 7, the Treptows story has stayed rock-solid consistent, while that of Officer Landen Beard has well, pretty much remained as undercover as he and all of official Minnesota has claimed he was at that moment.
It apparently took six months to introduce doubt into the case; the Anoka County grand jury yesterday indicted Martin Treptow. Joel Rosenberg has the whole, depressing story:
Well, the book has been thrown at Martin S. Treptow. Hes been charged in Anoka County, with:
1. Drive by shooting. MS 609.66 subd 1e(b) felony, up to ten years.
2. Reckless discharge in municipality sub 1a(3) ditto, up to two years.
3. Terrorist threats. 609.713 sub (1) ditto.
Well see what the next step in the railroading of Treptow and the whitewashing of Beard is tomorrow, when Landen Beard appears in Anoka County Court to have his wrist slapped.
Given the recent revelations that the investigators in the case have gone to the Saint Paul PD to dig up dirt about not Martin, but Rebecca Treptow, it looks to the casual observer like the Anoka County justice system is covering the backs of their Robbinsdale PD colleagues.
Beards indictment is scheduled for today. Well see what happens.
Remember - the jury has the final word on this case. This is far from over.
Or it should be. Martin Treptow isnt loaded - not even close. And this case could embarass the hell out of the Robbinsdale PD and, given its behavior for the past six months, Anoka as well. My two cents: Anoka County is throwing the book at Treptow, dredging up the worst possible assortment of felonies (and absurd ones, at that), to try to induce him to take a plea bargain rather than spend his familys entire future defending himself against the combined weight of every law enforcement agency in the Metro. If Treptow takes the plea, then the story of Officer Landen Beard, and all of the questions his behavior that day introduce into the story, disappear.
And those questions are big, nasty ones, if you believe in running a police department with a reputation for integrity:
1. Why was Landen Beard - a Robbinsdale officere - operating undercover in Anoka?
2. Who initiated, and carried on, the road rage incident?
3. Given that one of the three big rules of shooting is know what your backstop is, why did Landen Beard point a pistol at a pregnant woman and a car with two small children in the back?
4. Who drew their gun first - Beard or Treptow?
5. If the Anoka Sheriff thought Martin Treptows story was convincing enough to let him go on June 8, without even the inconvenience of suspending his carry permit, and yet the Grand Jury found evidence of three felonies, who dropped the ball? Or was it a ball drop at all?
My hunch - and thats all it is - is that the various jurisdictions involved know that the answers arent pretty, and want to do whatever they can to shut Treptow up and get the answers sealed in a court file, never to surface during the careers of anyone in office today.
Again, just a hunch.
If youd like to help :
Martin and Rebecca Treptow
Anoka Hennepin Credit Union,
3505 Northdale Blvd. N.W.
Coon Rapids, MN 55448.
UPDATE: Joel isnt the only local blog covering things. Doug at Northern Muckraker - one of the most-improved blogs in the area - has been writing about the Treptow case:Remember how I had previously written about Fox9 Newss coverage, and how they conveniently forgot to mention Beards name in their coverage of the story while putting Treptows name and face all over their airwaves, and how they also neglected to disclose their little conflict of interest, as Beard was the fiance (and now, apparently, the spouse) of one of their employees? The games continue, apparently.
Watch this clip of the update report Fox9 did this evening on the story. Notice how they have lots of video shots of Treptow, and how they manage to show a slow pan of the page of the indictment showing his name and full address, not once, but twice, in the report. No 1600 block of Pennsylania Avenue courtesy for Mr. Treptow, as that is usually how addresses of presumed innocent people are reported.
And Flash at Centrisity shows that its not just a partisan thing:I am ready for a rant, but will hold off until Beard faces the music today
As Joel notes, the music will likely be an indictment for double-parking.
UPDATE 2: I added Point 11 to the timeline, the ugly questions, and bumped the story to the top of the blog for today.
Yup - get ready for more of us to be “adjudicated to be mental defectives” so that we can have our gun rights stripped away from us.
Normally I give weight to the officer, but this is obviously a case of road rage BY AN OFFICER.
Remember the movie “Raging Bull!”? The movie about this will be named “Raging Pork!”.
Why is there so much redaction in the transcript? Why is there so much info that I’m not allowed to know? It makes me suspicious. The crucial issue here, to me, is who actually pulled a gun first.
I was on an attempted murder jury and that was one of the three charges...(I was an alternate, so sat out the deliberations - they found him not guilty of that).
It's kind of an "add-on" piling on thing by the DA. It applies if you address your target before you pull the trigger - such as "I'm going to kill you"; hence you've made a threat.
Ping to #34; I meant to include you in my reply.
If some idiot ran me off the road and pulled a gun on me and my wife, I wouldn't shoot to wound the son of a b!tch, I'd shoot to take him down. And such a shooting would be absolutely, 100% justified.
The crucial issue here, to me, is who actually pulled a gun first.
Not to me. I want to know who first made threats, and which, if either of them, acted to further the encounter and which acted to defuse it.
Whatever happened on the highway, Treptow left, and Beard followed.
The thing is because he is a police officer he will naturally tend to sway the jury and the judge his way. I bet he will show up in his uniform and act all professional, exactly opposite of the way he acted on the side of the road.
Man who shot police officer released (Carry Permit Holder)
Not if the situation is as it reads. The cop needs punishment for his behavior. This is OUR government and we can’t afford having it running amuck.