May 15, 2021

Local fugitive shot, killed by U.S. Marshals in Montana

U.S. Marshalls and Montana law enforcement on the scene near Reed Point Tuesday (Photo: Brandon Sullivan/KPAX news)

(Billings, MT) — Multiple sources indicate that wanted local fugitive, Christopher Eric Cook, was killed earlier today following a multijurisdictional chase in the state of Montana.

According to a press release issued by Chief Deputy Timothy Hornung with the U.S. Department of Justice, members of the U.S. Marshals-led Montana Violent Offenders Task Force (MVOTF) were involved in a shooting incident near Columbus, Montana, while seeking a fugitive wanted in Georgia on intimidation and stalking charges.

While the suspect’s name was not officially released in the statement pending a positive identification by the coroner — the truck was confirmed to be the one belonging to Cook and every indication is that he was the one killed.

The MVOTF requested the assistance of the Montana Highway Patrol to perform a traffic stop just outside of the Laurel, MT area.

The suspect failed to stop and then led the Montana Highway Patrol, MVOTF and Stillwater County Sheriff’s Office on a 35 mile multi-jurisdictional pursuit.

Spike strips were deployed twice during the pursuit, and Hornung says both spike strips were successful — but the suspect continued to lead law enforcement officers on the chase.

Members of the Montana Highway Patrol performed a PIT maneuver that pushed Cook’s truck, a dark blue 2007 Ford F-250, into a guardrail. The vehicle was finally stopped on Interstate 90 close to mile marker 399.

Reports indicate the suspect exited his vehicle and walked away from the scene, then turned toward law enforcement while brandishing a firearm.

Christopher Eric Cook (Photo: Franklin Police Dept.)

Investigators say the suspect ignored all law enforcement commands to surrender.

As a result of the perceived threat, two Deputy U.S. Marshals discharged their agency approved firearms and struck Cook multiple times. Emergency medical responders declared the suspect deceased.

No injuries to USMS/TFO personnel, other law enforcement personnel, or civilians were reported as a result of the incident.

Traffic was shut down near the scene for several hours during the initial investigation.

The USMS Office of Professional Responsibility has been deployed, and the incident is being investigated by the Montana Department of Justice, Division of Criminal Investigations.

The body was sent to the crime lab for positive identification and an autopsy due to it being an officer-involved shooting.

Franklin Police had been asking for the public’s help in finding Cook for several days. He had outstanding warrants for Aggravated Stalking and a felony charge of making Terroristic Threats.

Stay tuned to HeardCitizen.com for further details as they become available.

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