Authorities identify Des Moines area officers shot to death

Published: Nov. 2, 2016 at 6:21 AM CDT
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Authorities have identified the two Des Moines area police officers shot and killed Wednesday morning as Sgt. Anthony Beminio, with Des Moines P.D. since 2005 and Officer Justin Martin, with Urbandale P.D. since 2015. Scott Michael Greene is in custody accused of the shootings.

Des Moines police Sgt. Paul Parizek says Greene, 46, was taken into custody without incident Wednesday morning in Dallas County, just west of Des Moines.

Investigators say Greene was taken into custody near mile marker 100 of Interstate 80 off a gravel road. He had flagged down a Department of Natural Resources employee, showed an ID and asked him to call 911.

Greene was hospitalized for treatment of a medical condition.

The officers were shot to death in what were described as ambush-style attacks.

At a press conference early Wednesday morning the Des Moines Police Chief condemned the shooter or shooters as cowards.

According to reports, the officers were ambushed while sitting in their cars when they were shot and killed.

The first incident happened just after 1 am. That began with a report of shots fired in Urbandale, a suburb of Des Moines. When officers responded, they found an Urbandale officer had been shot.

Scott Greene

Already on high alert, police began their hunt for a suspect. Then just 20 minutes later a second call-- this time just a few blocks away. There, a Des Moines police officer was also found shot.

Both officers have died from their injuries.

Sgt. Paul Parizek, with the Des Moines Police, said, “There is a clear and present danger to police officers right now and we have doubled-up our officers. I believe Urbandale has taken some of those same precautions. But yes, there is definitely danger out there right now.”

During the suspect search all officers were paired-up as a safety precaution.

All Urbandale schools were closed Wednesday.

Ben Hammes, Communications Director for Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds released the following statements:

“Earlier this morning, like Iowans across our state, I woke to the tragic news of the horrific murders of Sgt. Beminio and Officer. Martin. I struggle to fully express the sorrow and sadness I feel for the families of our fallen officers, their departments, and their communities. The thoughts and prayers of Chris and I go out to the families of these officers and to those who served beside them.

I am thankful for the swift arrest of the suspect and the joint efforts of state and local officials to make the arrest possible. I have asked the Department of Public Safety to assist local officials with the investigation if needed. State public safety officials stand ready to see justice served and safety maintained.

As I said this morning, an attack on our public safety officers is an attack on the public safety of all Iowans. Our state and our law enforcement community are hurting right now. Today is a time for mourning. Today is also a time to come together, as Iowans always do, in support of these fallen officers, their families, and all those working to protect and serve in our state.”

--Gov. Terry Branstad

“Like so many, I was shocked and saddened to learn of the murders of Sgt. Beminio and Officer Martin. First and foremost, my family and I offer our prayers for the victims’ families and all of our law enforcement community. We mourn these heartbreaking losses.

I am also reminded of the job our law enforcement officers are asked to perform day in and day out and how valiantly they do so. I also join Gov. Branstad in applauding the swift work of state and local law enforcement in the apprehension of the suspect.

Today’s devastating news will undoubtedly affect all Iowans. The coming days will be difficult. I want our law enforcement community to know we stand with you, value your service for us, and you have our unwavering support. I hope everyone will keep the victims and their families in their prayers and support our law enforcement community through this trying time.”

--Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds

U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) issued the following statement:

"My thoughts and prayers are with the two Iowa police officers who were killed in the line of duty, as well as their families and the entire Iowa law enforcement community as they face this devastating loss.

"Although the investigation is still unfolding, what appears to be an ambush attack of police in the line of duty is an attack on the community at large and all of the men and women who risk their lives every day to protect us. This was a senseless act of violence and it cannot be tolerated."

U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley released the following statement:

“Barbara and I are praying for the families, fellow officers and loved ones of two of Iowa’s finest today. These officers were killed in what appears to be an unprovoked and cold-blooded act.

“Every day, our law enforcement officers go to work to keep us safe. No matter the circumstances, they answer the call in communities across Iowa. We all keep the officers in Des Moines, Urbandale and throughout Iowa in our thoughts as they respond to an ongoing dangerous situation.”

Attorney General Tom Miller statement:

“There are no words to adequately express my sorrow and heartache over the senseless murders of two police officers in the line of duty. I offer my deepest condolences to these officers’ families, their law enforcement colleagues, and loved ones.

As Iowans, we are thankful for these two law enforcement heroes who tragically lost their lives. We are grateful for all the men and women in uniform who selflessly risk everything to protect us and keep our communities safe.

I hope law enforcement officers across our state, who are feeling a profoundly numbing loss, can take at least some solace and comfort from the gratitude and support they have from Iowans.”

OPD Chief Todd Schmaderer Statement:

On behalf of the Omaha Police Department, I offer our condolences to the families of the fallen officers, their agencies, and the communities they serve. The homicides of the Des Moines and Urbandale, Iowa officers is an affront to all of society. Law Enforcement has been on high alert since the ambush-style killings and the suspect's arrest is the result of the collective efforts of brave officers. Law enforcement remains a challenging profession and yet, we are committed to serving and protecting our communities despite the inherent dangers. Thank you to the Omaha community for your unwavering support of the Omaha Police Department and its officers during times of need and for your willingness to create strong partnerships to move Omaha forward.