Butte Sheriff Ed Lester was clear about his opinion of the men suspected of killing a Broadwater County Sheriff's deputy Mason Moore on Tuesday morning.
“There’s probably a special place in hell for these two individuals and that’s probably where they belong,” Lester said.
Moore was a husband and father of three children.
Three Butte police officers pursued the suspects, Lloyd and Marshall Barrus, in a high-speed chase on Interstate 90 between Butte and Missoula that involved the suspects allegedly shooting at pursuing officers. The chase continued at about 100 mph until it reached Granite County.
“At some point there Montana Highway Patrol officer was able to deploy a device to flatten the tires of the vehicle,” Lester said.
Once the tires deflated in the fleeing vehicle, one of the suspects started firing the high-powered rifle from the rear of the Suburban at the pursuing patrol cars.
“Two of our vehicles sustained gunshot damage and were disabled to the point where they could not continue. One of our vehicles just sustained gunshots to the tires and flattened the tires. A second vehicle sustained some gunshots to the engine compartment and the engine subsequently stopped,” Lester said.
The suspects eventually stopped and the Butte officer and other officers engaged in a firefight. No officers were injured in the pursuit or following firefight.
“But it really brings home the responsibility and the sacrifice that officers make from around the state and around the country and they’re heroes,” Lester said.
The sheriff expressed his condolences to the family of the slain officer and added this was a sad day for law enforcement.