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Floyd Brown charged with murder in death of deputy

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A man suspected of fatally shooting a sheriff’s deputy and wounding a woman at a Rockford, Illinois hotel was taken into custody Thursday after an hourslong standoff. Prosecutors say Floyd Brown faces charges including first degree murder. (March 8)
AP

When sheriff’s deputies arrived at Floyd Brown’s hotel room to serve a warrant on Thursday morning, authorities say, his girlfriend tried to answer the door.

Brown shot her, the FBI says.

The 39-year-old felon then shot and killed a sheriff’s deputy outside the Rockford, Ill., hotel before leading police on a high-speed chase 150 miles away.

Details of the deadly confrontation emerged Friday as federal authorities charged Brown with first-degree murder in the death of McHenry County Deputy Jacob Keltner. If convicted, he could be sentenced to death.

“The death penalty is a possibility,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Margaret Schneider said Friday. “There is a whole process we have to go through to determine if that will be done.”

Brown also faces state murder charges in the killing.

Keltner, a 35-year-old husband and father of two young children, was working with a U.S. Marshal’s Service fugitive task force Thursday when he was gunned down at the Extended Stay Hotel in Rockford.

The task force went to the hotel Thursday morning to arrest Brown, who was wanted on warrants for burglaries in Central Illinois and parole violation.

A member of the task force identified himself as law enforcement and knocked on the hotel room door, FBI special agent Jeremy Smith wrote in an affidavit released Friday.

Officers heard someone walking toward the door, Smith wrote, and then Brown yelled “Don’t do it.” 

More: Illinois deputy killed serving warrant; suspect caught following standoff on Interstate 55

Task force officers attempted to use a key to unlock the door of the third-floor room, but an internal swing lock was in place, Smith wrote.

The suspect’s girlfriend told officers standing at the partially unlocked door said that she wanted to get out, Smith wrote, while Brown continued to yell.

“Gunfire then started coming through the hotel door and walls of Room 305 toward the task force officers,” Smith wrote.

Brown shot his girlfriend, authorities say. They say no law enforcement officers at the scene fired their weapons.

The 25-year-old woman suffered non-life threatening injuries, authorities say. She was treated and released from an area hospital hours after the incident.

Brown managed to escape capture at the hotel by jumping out a third-floor window.

Keltner was positioned in the parking lot on the northeast side of the building. As Brown was fleeing, authorities say, he shot the deputy in the head. 

The suspect then jumped into his Mercury Grand Marquis and fled the area, authorities say. Illinois State Police eventually spotted him driving near Bloomington, Ill. – about 150 miles from Rockford – some 90 minutes after the shooting.

He would lead state police on a high-speed chase through the streets of Bloomington and neighboring Normal and then on Interstate 55 near Lincoln, authorities say. Brown shot at police several times with a rifle, Smith wrote in the affidavit.

The chase ended when a state police trooper rammed a squad car into Brown’s vehicle and forced it into a ditch.

Brown barricaded himself in his car for a standoff that lasted nearly six hours before police finally took him into custody. 

Brown, who has a criminal history that includes convictions for burglary and domestic violence, suffered injuries and remained hospitalized Friday. Authorities did not release details.

He is scheduled to make his first court appearance Monday in federal court in Rockford.

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2019/03/08/floyd-brown-rockford-shooting-mchenry-sheriffs-deputy-murder-death-penalty/3106234002/


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