A man died Sunday evening in Rosebud after a police pursuit culminated in officers shooting at a vehicle that rammed them before the vehicle crashed down a cliff, according to a press release from Rosebud Sioux Tribe Law Enforcement Services.
The man is not being identified by law enforcement until his family is notified. It's not clear exactly how the man died.
It's unclear if the man was shot, and, if so, if he died from the shooting or the impact of the crash, RST Police Chief Marlin Enno told the Journal. The RST officers were involved in a "shooting that resulted in a death" around 6 p.m. on Jan. 27 said Kevin Smith, spokesman for the FBI Minneapolis Division, in an email.
None of the officers were injured, Smith said.
"It's an unfortunate situation," Rosebud Sioux Tribe President Rodney Bordeaux said of the incident, noting that many people know those involved since it's a small reservation. "The families on both sides are hurt, which is understandable."
Bordeaux said he is praying for the families of the victim and the officers.
The incident began when someone reported an intoxicated man who was breaking windows and trying to hurt his family in St. Francis, the press release says. A caller gave a description of the man's vehicle once he left the area.
An RST officer tried to stop the vehicle once he saw it in Rosebud, according to the release. But the man drove away toward a housing area. Another officer joined the pursuit and the suspect vehicle drove up an old gravel trail that leads to the Soldier Hill homes. Officers were able to identify the driver and realized he had a tribal warrant.
Once at the top of the trail, the suspect vehicle was unable to drive onto the pavement road and was blocked by two police cars, the release said. The driver then rammed his vehicle into one of the police cars. The officers fired at the suspect vehicle, which traveled over a cliff and rolled to the bottom. The RST Ambulance Service pronounced the man dead at the scene and tried to extricate him from the vehicle.
Enno and Smith did not provide the names of the officers who shot at the car.
The incident remains under investigation by the FBI.