State Trooper killed during traffic stop in West Michigan


Paul Butterfield

A 14-year-veteran of the Michigan State Police is being remembered as a hardworking trooper who loved loved his job.

Trooper Paul Butterfield was shot during a traffic stop yesterday evening in Mason County’s Sherman Township. He later died of a gunshot wound to the head at a Traverse City-area hospital, while undergoing emergency surgery.

A suspect was located about two hours after the shooting at a gas station in Manistee County.

“At that point and time, the suspect pointed a gun at the troopers,” said Lt. Chris McIntire with the Michigan State Police. “The troopers fired one shot, striking the suspect, and took him into custody.”

That suspect was transported to a hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. A second suspect was also taken into custody.

Gov. Rick Snyder described Butterfield, who was based out of the state police’s Hart Post, as a “hero.”

“Our hearts break when a Michigan State Police trooper, or any of our other police officers or firefighters, is killed in the line of duty,” said Snyder. “Their loss is unquestionably felt by their families as well as the communities they serve and our entire state.”

Police are still investigating what prompted the shooting. Meanwhile, colleagues are remembering Butterfield as a hard-working trooper who truly loved his job.

“The entire MSP family, as well as our greater law enforcement family, mourns alongside the Butterfields,” said Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the MSP. “Trooper Butterfield’s sacrifice will never be forgotten.”