Neighbors say officers were ‘fearless’ during latest Burnsville stand-off

Neighbors in the Sunny Acres mobile home community in Burnsville say law enforcement officers were "fearless" in their response to a stand-off Saturday night, despite the recent line-of-duty deaths in their city.

Burnsville police responded to the 15800 block of Buck Hill Road around 8:30 p.m. Saturday, on reports that neighbors heard a gunshot from inside a residence. When officers arrived, they determined the woman responsible for firing the gun was still inside the residence, prompting a shelter-in-place and an hours-long stand-off.

Police say the woman was taken into custody after eight hours of negotiations and two officers with the Tri-City Tactical Team suffered non life-threatening injuries.

The incident comes six weeks after three Burnsville first responders were killed in the line of duty. Officers Paul Elmstrand, Matthew Ruge and firefighter-paramedic Adam Finseth were killed during a stand-off with Shannon Gooden.

"These guys could have faced the same thing, and they came in fearless," said Jose Ramirez who claims to have made the initial 911 call. "They took precautions, they evacuated everyone, I feel like they did an amazing job."

Ramirez said the suspect was acting strangely when she forced her way into his uncle’s car as he was returning home from work Saturday night. Ramirez was eventually able to coax the woman out of the car and call police. A short while later, he reports hearing a gunshot from her home.

"She looked very out of it, so I came back to see if she was okay and that’s when I heard a pop sound," he said.

A spokesperson for Burnsville police said it is unclear whether any of the officers who responded to the deadly Feb. 18 stand-off were also present at the incident Saturday.

"It was scary enough when it happened on the other side of Burnsville, but right here--wow," said Sunny Acres resident Joni Martinson. "My heart just breaks for the whole department."