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Illinois State trooper dies after shootout in East St. Louis

Kim Bell and Taylor Tiamoyo Harris, St. Louis Post-Dispatch on

Published in News & Features

EAST ST. LOUIS -- An Illinois State Police trooper was fatally shot while executing a search warrant early Friday in a residential neighborhood here.

Trooper Nick Hopkins, 33, with 10 year's experience on the force, died at St. Louis University Hospital just after 6 p.m., authorities said.

Hopkins, of Waterloo, was married, a father of 4-year-old twins and an infant daughter, and was a Waterloo High School graduate, said Waterloo Mayor Tom Smith. Hopkins' brother, Zack Hopkins, is a police sergeant for the Columbia, Ill., police department.

After the shooting, police surrounded a home near 42nd Street and Caseyville Avenue. They arrested one person around 6 a.m., a resident said. At least two have been arrested in total, authorities said.

Police remained at the scene all day Friday, uncertain if another suspect was barricaded in the house.

Police said Hopkins had been shot during an exchange of gunfire at 5:26 a.m. Friday. Police didn't say if anyone else was shot.

 

Dorothy Burns lives about two blocks away and was awake at 5:30 a.m. as her husband got ready for work.

"All I heard is boom boom -- two shots," she said. "Then it sounded like an explosion and I saw smoke like they were trying to smoke 'm out."

Burns has lived on 42nd Street for three years. "All I can say is they need to cut this violence out because it's on my block," she said.

She stood behind crime-scene tape with about 20 other residents. Police with rifles roamed the area. One officer told a reporter to back away, concerned about more gunfire from the house.

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