Patrolman Michael M. Ren

Patrolman Michael M. Ren

Montana Highway Patrol, Montana

End of Watch Saturday, April 8, 1978

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Michael M. Ren

Patrolman Michael Ren was shot and killed after being called to assist a deputy from the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office in serving two felony warrants on a recently released mental patient. The suspect was wanted for violating the terms of his release from a state mental health facility. Patrolman Ren spotted the suspect driving a pickup truck, and a high-speed chase ensued.

During the chase, the suspect retrieved a .308 rifle from inside the cab of his pickup and opened fire on both officers. Five rounds struck Patrolman Ren's patrol car before the suspect crashed in the town of Eureka. As Patrolman Ren pulled up, the suspect jumped from his truck and shot Ren in the abdomen with the .308; the round traveled between the back panels of his Kevlar vest.

The suspect ran to a nearby residence and took the household hostage. Officers from the sheriff's department, Highway Patrol, and U.S. Border Patrol surrounded the residence. After six hours, the suspect released his hostages but remained barricaded inside the house. Three canisters of tear gas were fired into the home, and the suspect surrendered. The suspect was charged with the murder of a police officer and was committed to a mental institution. He was later released and committed suicide.

Patrolman Ren was a United States Air Force veteran who served with the Montana Highway Patrol for six years assigned to District VI and previously served as a police officer in Columbia Falls, Montana, for two years. He was survived by his wife, 5-year-old son, and his parents. In 2000 Patrolman Ren's son joined the Montana Highway Patrol.

Bio

  • Age 30
  • Tour 8 years
  • Badge 240
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle; .308 caliber
  • Offender Committed suicide

hostage, mentally ill, officer assistance, warrant service

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