Official: Trooper who shot man "heroic"

Posted: Friday, November 27, 2009

FAIRBANKS - The head of the Alaska State Trooper said the trooper who shot and killed a man yielding a knife earlier this week acted heroically and may have saved lives.

The Fairbanks Daily News Miner reports Col. Audie Holloway traveled from Anchorage to asses the incident and said the trooper may have saved the lives of the medics also responding to the call.

Troopers say 38-year-old Thom G. Gruenig refused commands to drop the weapon and came at the trooper with a knife.

The troopers and medics were responding to a 911 call from the residence. Dispatchers could only hear labored breathing.

Later inside the home, troopers found the body of Gruenig's 66-year-old mother, Kathryn Gruenig, who died of stab wounds.

Holloway said substance abuse may have played a role in Gruenig's behavior.

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