Trooper Paul Butterfield
Michigan State Police, Michigan
End of Watch: Monday, September 9, 2013
Tour of Duty: 14 years
Badge Number: Not available
Cause of Death: Gunfire
Date of Incident: September 9, 2013
Weapon Used: Gun; Unknown type
Suspect Info: Shot and wounded
Agency Contact Information
Colonel Kriste Kibbey Etue
Michigan State Police
333 S Grand Avenue
PO Box 30634
Lansing, MI 48909
Phone: (517) 332-2521
Trooper Paul Butterfield was shot and killed while making a traffic stop on Custer Road, near Townline Road, in Mason County, at approximately 6:20 pm.
A few minutes after radioing in the stop a citizen called 911 to report a trooper had been shot. Responding units located Trooper Butterfield on the ground suffering from a gunshot wound to the head. He was flown to Munson Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds while in surgery.
Using a vehicle description provided by Trooper Butterfield as he stopped the vehicle, investigators were able to identify a suspect and located him, along with a female accomplice, at a convenience store in a neighboring county approximately two hours later. Officers exchanged gunfire with him as they made contact, wounding the male subject before taking them both into custody.
Trooper Butterfield was a U.S. Army veteran and had served with the Michigan State Police for 14 years.
BRIDGEPORT TOWNSHIP, MI — Paul Butterfield, the Michigan State Police trooper shot and killed in a traffic stop in Mason County, was a 1988 graduate of Bridgeport High School, according to a longtime friend.
Butterfield stopped a vehicle on Custer Road near Townline in Mason County about 6:20 p.m. Monday, Sept. 9. At 6:23 p.m., a passing motorist called 911 to report finding Butterfield on the ground with a gunshot wound to the head. Butterfield was airlifted to Munson Hospital, where he died during emergency surgery, police report.
Police identified a suspect vehicle, and after a gunfight that left one suspect shot, police arrested two a man and a woman.
Butterfield attended Bridgeport High School, where he was a member of the cross country, track and ski teams, according to his LinkedIn page.
He was a member of the Bridgeport High School 1988 graduating class Facebook group.
Maurice Hopgood said he graduated a year after Butterfield, in 1989. He described Butterfield as an outstanding track and cross-country runner and a personal friend.
He last saw Butterfield "a couple years back."
"I saw him in passing, and it was really good to see him," he said.
"It’s a tremendous loss," he said. "He was a warm-hearted person. He got along with everybody."
Butterfield was the 1987 Class A State Cross Country Champion, according to his profile.
He still holds a total of five individual and relay records listed on the Bridgeport Township track and cross country team Facebook page.
Butterfield graduated from Bridgeport High School in 1988 and attended the University of Tennessee-Knoxville from 1988 to 1993, where he was a member of the track and cross country teams.
He served as a mechanized infantry soldier from 1997 to 2001 in the Hawaii and Michigan Army National Guard, his profile states, and he was a member of the Army from 1993 to 1996.
He joined the Michigan State Police in 1999, graduating as a member of the 118th Trooper Recruit School, according to the state police. He served at the Manistee and Hart posts and has worked as a trooper for more than 14 years.
"Everybody’s pretty upset," Lt. Brian Cole of the Michigan State Police said Tuesday, Sept. 10. "It’s a sad day for the MSP. It’s a big loss. Any time we lose a fellow officer, it’s a big loss. It hits you pretty hard."
Cole asks that everyone pray for Butterfield’s family.
"It’s a major loss to our department," Cole said. "We lost a family member. We’re very saddened. We’re asking everyone to pray for the trooper and his family members."