Deputy Jake Keltner shot and killed at Rockford hotel; suspect in custody – Rockford Register Star

Deputy Jake Keltner shot and killed at Rockford hotel; suspect in custody - Rockford Register Star

Officer shot at Rockford hotel dies; suspect Floyd Brown in custody

ROCKFORD, Ill. (AP) — A man suspected of fatally shooting a sheriffs deputy and wounding a woman at an Illinois hotel was taken into custody Thursday after an hourslong standoff that began when he crashed his vehicle along an interstate highway, authorities said.

Floyd E. Brown, 39, was arrested hours after the crash in central Illinois, State Trooper Sean Ramsey said. Officers employed flash grenades to disable Brown after trying for hours to negotiate with him to surrender, police said.

Brown, of Springfield, was taken to a hospital to be treated for several injuries. It wasnt immediately known what caused the injuries, Ramsey said.

Brown is accused of fatally shooting 35-year-old Deputy Jacob Keltner, a 12 ½-year veteran of the McHenry County Sheriffs Office in northern Illinois. Keltner was pronounced dead at a hospital several hours after he was shot, spokesman David Dezane said.

Police said a 25-year-old woman described as an acquaintance of Brown suffered injuries that werent life-threatening after being hit with one of Browns rounds. She was treated at a hospital and released.

The shootings happened Thursday morning at a hotel as a U.S. Marshals Service fugitive task force tried to serve Brown with an arrest warrant for burglary and parole violation charges. Brown fled the hotel in Rockford in Winnebago County, about 80 miles (129 kilometers) northwest of Chicago, and traveled about 170 miles (274 kilometers) to Logan County in central Illinois, police said.

Prosecutors in Winnebago County in northern Illinois initially issued a warrant with $5 million bond against Brown for attempted murder. States Attorney Marilyn Hite Ross said the charge was upgraded to first-degree murder after Keltner died. A spokeswoman for the U.S. attorneys office said Brown also will face a federal murder charge in the death of the deputy, who was assisting federal law enforcement when he was shot.

McHenry County Sheriff Bill Prim called Keltner a great guy whose father and brother serve in law enforcement in suburban Chicago.

Jake was a fine young man who leaves a wife and two young children, Prim said. We are going to miss him.

Keltner was the first officer in the department to die in the line of duty in three years, Prim said.

From 2009 to 2019, 73 officers were killed nationwide while attempting to serve warrants, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page, a nonprofit group that keeps track of officer fatalities nationwide.

This story has been corrected to show that Winnebago County is in northern Illinois, not central Illinois, and to show that police now say Brown is 39, not 45.

Area law enforcement vehicles gather near the scene of a shooting in Rockford where a McHenry County sheriffs deputy was shot. Deputy Jacob Keltner, 35, a 13-year police veteran, later died at a hospital. Associated Press

McHenry County sheriffs deputy Jacob Keltner was shot to death Thursday while trying to serve an arrest warrant with the U.S. Marshals Service in Rockford. Courtesy of McHenry County sheriffs office

Police responded to the Extended Stay America hotel in Rockford Thursday morning, where authorities say a McHenry County sheriffs deputy was shot and later died. A woman also was wounded in the hotel. ABC 7 Chicago

ASSOCIATED PRESSIllinois State Police and crisis negotiators were in an hourslong standoff with Floyd E. Brown, 39, of Springfield, on Interstate 55 near Lincoln Thursday. Authorities say Brown shot a McHenry County sheriffs deputy attached to a U.S. Marshals Service task force in Rockford, then fled. The deputy, Jacob Keltner, later died.

McHenry County sheriffs deputy Jacob Keltner was shot to death Thursday while trying to serve an arrest warrant with the U.S. Marshals Service in Rockford. Courtesy of McHenry County sheriffs office

Area law enforcement vehicles gather near the scene of a shooting in Rockford Thursday. Ken DeCoster/Rockford Register Star via AP

A McHenry County sheriffs deputy died after being shot Thursday morning while working with federal agents at a Rockford hotel, and the suspect was taken into custody after a hourslong standoff with state police along Interstate 55 northeast of Springfield.

Deputy Jacob Keltner, 35, a 13-year police veteran who comes from a law enforcement family, died shortly after 3:30 p.m. at Javon Bea Hospital in Rockford, said David Devane, chief administrative officer for the McHenry County sheriffs office.

Keltner was assigned to a U.S. Marshals Task Force trying to arrest Floyd E. Brown, 39, of Springfield on outstanding warrants at the Extended Stay America on Bell School Road, Rockford police said. Keltner was sworn as a special deputy U.S. Marshal, police said.

McHenry County Sheriff Bill Prim said Keltner was “a fine young man” who leaves behind a wife and two young children. He was an integral part of the sheriffs office and had risen quickly to greater responsibilities since being sworn in, in 2006, Prim said.

Brown had burglary warrants from McLean and Champaign counties, a failure to appear warrant from Sangamon County and a parole violation issued by the Illinois Department of Corrections, Rockford Police Chief Dan OShea said.

Officers responded about 9:15 a.m. to the hotel for a call to assist marshals after a report of shots fired. Keltner was shot by Brown in the hotels parking lot, OShea said.

A 25-year-old woman from Springfield, who was an acquaintance of Brown, was shot in the hotel room. She was treated and released from a hospital, police said Thursday afternoon.

Police said no rounds were fired by any law enforcement, so the woman likely was shot by Brown, who apparently was using a rifle.

They said it seems Brown, who was staying in a third-floor room, jumped out a window while fleeing police.

Brown, who was driving a Mercury Grand Marquis, was spotted about 10:45 a.m. by state troopers — who also responded to the shooting in Rockford — along Interstate 39 at mile marker 8, just north of Bloomington-Normal, Illinois State Police officials said.

A 30-minute chase ensued during which Brown displayed a rifle and reached speeds “well in excess” of 100 mph in inclement weather, state police said.

The chase ended when troopers crashed into Browns vehicle on I-55 near mile marker 133 in Logan County, around Lincoln northeast of Springfield, “in an attempt to terminate the pursuit for the safety of the public,” state police said.

Browns vehicle came to rest in a ditch; Brown exited and re-entered the vehicle, and barricaded himself inside for about six hours, state police said.

The state police SWAT team and crisis negotiation officers were called to the scene. Law enforcement negotiated with him until he surrendered and was taken into custody “peacefully” without gunfire, Illinois State Police Master Sgt. Sam Thomas said.

During the arrest, Brown suffered injuries that are not life-threatening and for which hes being treated, officials said. Thomas said he could not confirm reports that flash bangs were used.

OShea declined to say which weapons Brown had when he was apprehended, citing the ongoing investigation.

Brown is in custody of state police and eventually will be turned over to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, state police said.

Law enforcement representatives commended the cooperation among agencies resulting in Browns arrest.

The Winnebago states attorney authorized first-degree murder charges, which carry a penalty of mandatory life in prison, officials said. The U.S. attorneys office for the Northern District of Illinois had authorized attempted murder charges that will be upgraded to murder charges, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Margaret Schneider, the Rockford branch chief.

Federal charges can be issued when a federal law enforcement officer, or someone assisting federal law enforcement, is killed, Schneider said. The death penalty is a possibility, she said.

Prim said Keltners brother is an officer for the DuPage County sheriffs office; his father retired from that office and is “still affiliated” with the U.S. Marshals, Prim said.

Keltner volunteered for the assignment with the U.S. Marshals to “chase the worst of the worst,” Prim said. “Sometimes when people are willing to take on these responsibilities, this is an unfortunate end.”

“This is a very dark day for McHenry County and we will keep the officer and his family in our prayers,” McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks said. “All law enforcement, for that matter.”

Prim said his office received “overwhelming support” from law enforcement at the federal, state and local levels. He commended Rockford police, the Winnebago County sheriffs office and state police.

“​I have every confidence that the people of McHenry County will come together as a community to mourn this fine young man and support his family and colleagues through this difficult time,” Prim said.

Illinois Department of Corrections records show Brown was paroled in January 2018 after serving part of a 13-year prison sentence on residential burglary charges out of downstate Macon and McLean counties.

He previously served time in 2005 on unlawful restraint and violating an order of protection charges, and in 2001 on a charge unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, all out of Sangamon County.

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