Shooting witness: 'Just wish I could have helped him'by Tim Nelson, Minnesota Public Radio,
Phil Picardi, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The man who witnessed the shooting death of a Maplewood police officer on Saturday morning says called the incident "a cold-blooded execution.:
Bill Langevin, a former police officer and firefighter in St. Paul, said he was out for a morning run on Saturday when Sgt. Joe Bergeron drove by in his squad car, waved and smiled.
Moments later, Langevin said he watched as a pair of carjacking suspects stepped up to Bergeron's open squad car door, and one of them shot the police sergeant in the head.
"This was just a cold-blooded execution," Langevin told MPR's Morning Edition. "That they just wanted to kill a police officer and they just murdered and executed him."
Langevin said he ran immediately to the squad car to help, and saw that Bergeron had been killed.
"I just reacted without thinking," Langevin said. "I just wished I could have helped him, but he was so mortally wounded. That's the hard part about it ... It's just tragic and I feel so bad for his family."
The suspected shooter in the case, Jason Jones, was killed during a six-hour manhunt for Bergeron's killer. Another suspect, Joshua Martin, 21, was arrested later in the day with help from a description from Langevin.
Martin was charged Monday with second-degree murder and is being held on $2 million bail. He could face indictment for first-degree murder in the case.
Authorities have released two others, a brother and sister from St. Paul, who were arrested Monday on suspicion of helping Martin evade police before his arrest. Officials say the two could still be charged at a later date.
Click the audio link to listen to the full interview. Listeners should be warned that the conversation includes some graphic descriptions of what Langevin saw.
- Morning Edition, 05/04/2010, 8:35 a.m.
Tim Nelson is a general assignment reporter for MPR News.