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St. Paul officer shot dead
Duchesne Drew, Star Tribune
May 6, 2005
8:01 AM

Police were conducting a manhunt throughout the Dayton's Bluff neighborhood on the East Side of St. Paul after a vice officer working undercover was shot dead early this morning. Two suspects were at large.

Officers dressed in camouflage could be seen going door to door as a National Guard helicopter hovered overhead.

Sgt. Jerry Vick was pronounced dead at Regions Hospital this morning, Chief John Harrington told reporters during a 6 a.m. news conference. Vick had been shot in an alley near Seventh and Forest Streets after exchanging shots with two suspects outside Erick's Bar around 2:20 a.m. The alleged gunmen fled on foot.

"This is a grim day. It's a day that the lights of one of the great heroes have gone out," Harrington said.

Witnesses said they had heard 10 to 12 gun shots; authorities said Vick was shot multiple times.

St. Paul police closed down city streets within 1 1/2 miles of the shooting site, although freeways remained open this morning. More than 100 officers were working with canines and heavy weapons support in carrying out a door-to-door search. St. Paul officials also had asked for aerial support from the National Guard, Harrington said.

Vick was a well known and highly respected officer, Harrington said.

"Jerry loved what he was doing. Being a cop was phenomenal for Jerry," Harrington said. "He reminds us to never give up that joy for the job."

Mayor Randy Kelly and Fire Chief Doug Holton joined Harrington to speak with reporters this morning.

"I don't think that there is a greater tragedy to befall a community then the loss of a police officer," Kelly said. "As mayor...I know I speak for every citizen of St. Paul in expressing our greatest sorrow to Sergeant Vick's family and to his two children."

Vick, 41, was a 22-year veteran of the St. Paul force and was actively working with a partner on a prostitution detail at the time of his shooting, Harrington said.

Vick had received two medal of valor commendations: One was made in December 1990, for rescuing a child from a burning home. The other was awarded in 1997, after Vick shot and killed an armed suspect at a crime scene.

"I want to assure all the people of St. Paul that the police are actively engaged in pursuing and apprehending the two suspects in this shooting," Kelly said.
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