A St. Louis County Police officer has died following an early morning shooting on Thursday. Officer Blake Snyder was responding to a disturbance call when he was shot.
The suspect is an 18-year-old male who is being treated for gun shot wounds at a local hospital. He was shot by a second police officer.
During a news conference Thursday morning at the St. Louis County Police Headquarters, Chief Jon Belmar said the deadly shooting is an example of the dangers police face every day: “They work in an incredibly difficult environment on an ideal day and at times, as we have seen, it is an environment that can be incredibly dangerous.”
According to Belmar, at 5:04 a.m., officers responded to disturbance call in Green Park, a small municipality in South St. Louis County. When the officers’ arrived, the suspect – who is said to have been the cause of the disturbance call – opened fire, striking Snyder.
Snyder was 33 and a four-year veteran of the department.
Belmar described Snyder as a tremendously dedicated officer.
“And if you asked him why he’s a police officer, he would tell you without hesitation. 'because I want to help people,' " said Belmar. "So that’s what I do know about Officer Snyder.”
Snyder is survived by his wife and 2-year-old son.
The suspected shooter is Trenton Forster, 18, of south St. Louis County. Foster was in stable condition at an area hospital after being shot multiple times.
St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch has charged Forster with murder in the first degree and set bond at a million dollars. McCulloch says his heart goes out to Snyder's wife.
"She will have a great deal of support, which will help her through it. It certainly won't make her pain and sense of loss go away. That I know," he said.
“The focus right now, the two main focuses right now are one: taking care of Officer Snyder’s family, his wife and young son and the extended family. And the second is doing the thorough investigation, completing that investigation. And so that is ongoing now.
"There are plenty of officers out on the street right now running down all of these things to find out: what connection, where the gun came from, how he got the gun, was there ammunition purchased recently, when did he get it, are there issues he had with the police other than what we know about right now?
"All those sorts of things are something that in a normal course of investigation we will run down. That just hasn’t happened yet.”