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Judge Denied Plea to Commit Man Who Fatally Shot Cop

Judge Denied Plea to Commit Man Who Fatally Shot Cop

Des Moines Register via YellowBrix

April 06, 2011

Around noon on Monday, Steinhart said, he saw an ambulance race by his house. Dozens of emergency vehicles followed shortly.

Officials said that Sheriff Jeff Shipley and Deputies Stein and Casey Hinnah arrived at Krier’s home shortly before noon on Monday and that Krier opened fire.

Stein was hit and died of his wounds at the scene. Shipley and Hannah were unhurt.

Steinhart said he had met Stein only once. He had arrived by ambulance about 10 years ago to treat his wife for a broken ankle.

“He did a fine job,” said Steinhart, standing in his front yard near the muddy tire tracks.

He then grimaced in pain, apologized and turned his back to cry.

“I don’t know why it happened. It just did,” he said. “I’m just very sorry for Eric’s family.”

The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is investigating Monday’s deaths. Agents are conducting interviews, surveying the crime scene and reviewing evidence in an effort to reconstruct what occurred at Krier’s home on Monday, Iowa Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Jessica Lown said.

Lown said in an email response to questions from the Register that it may be several days before there are answers to questions such as what kind of weapons Krier had, how many shots were fired and who fired them. Officials are also waiting for autopsy reports on Krier and Stein, Lown said.

Lown said Krier did not have a permit to carry a weapon in Keokuk County.

On Friday evening, Krier threatened to kill a physician’s assistant, that man’s wife said.

Krier also stalked the couple’s home, said Cricket Baker, 47.

Baker said she and her husband, Robert, were at home Friday night when a nurse called from the Sigourney medical center where Robert works.

Baker said the nurse told her husband that Krier, one of his patients, had just called and threatened to kill him.

The news rattled Cricket Baker enough that she asked her husband to drive her Jeep to work Saturday instead of his convertible. She said she saw Krier drive by their house at least 12 times from Friday night to Saturday night.

Cricket Baker said the couple reported Krier’s threat to the sheriff’s office. She said that she talked to law enforcement officers Monday and that they told her they didn’t know about the incident until that morning.

Baker said she felt a sinking feeling when she saw patrol cars speeding by her home Monday.

“We came from L.A., where this kind of stuff happens all the time,” she said. “This doesn’t happen here. This is crazy.”

Neither local nor state officials released new information Tuesday about the shooting of Stein, 39, who had been with the sheriff’s office since 2000.

About three hours after Stein was shot, Krier left his house armed with weapons, was shot by an Iowa State Patrol tactical unit and died at the scene, officials said. Authorities did not say what weapons Krier had or whether he threatened other officers.

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