Woman’s 911 call helped police apprehend murderer
A shopper who alerted police to an armed suspect’s location and responders who saved a man in cardiac arrest were honored at the Aug. 22 Burnsville City Council meeting.
Police Chief Eric Gieseke gave a Citizen Commendation to Burnsville resident Erin Stuart, who was at the Dollar Tree store on Aldrich Avenue last Nov. 7 when she heard a scuffle at the rear of the store.
Unbeknown to her, Hendrickson and an employee had been involved in an altercation and Hendrickson had been asked to leave the store, according to Gieseke’s account.
She saw Hendrickson leave the store and return a short time later. Hendrickson fired a gun several times, with one of the bullets striking and killing 69-year-old shopper Donald J. Hortsch, of Rosemount. He also shot 26-year-old Synquez Davis, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down.
Stuart went to her vehicle and saw Hendrickson exit the store again. As she drove away, she realized she was right behind his vehicle.
Hands shaking, she retrieved her cellphone and called 911.
“While calling 911 Erin observed Mr. Hendrickson throw what she believed to be a gun out of his vehicle,” Gieseke said. “Erin stopped her vehicle near the discarded firearm and waited for the police to arrive while providing 911 dispatchers with the location of Mr. Hendrickson’s fleeing vehicle.”
She then identified Hendrickson as the Dollar Tree suspect in a police show-up.
Hendrickson, 28, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder in June and was sentenced to 32 years and six months in prison.
Fire Department Life Saving Awards were presented for the June 21 response to sudden cardiac arrest suffered by 69-year-old Lonny Wallace at his home.
The national survival rate for sudden cardiac arrest is 12 percent, Fire Chief B.J. Jungmann said. Burnsville averages 30 cases a year, with a 10 percent survival rate in 2016, he said.
A coordinated effort including bystanders, first responders, paramedics and the hospital is needed to give victims a chance of survival, Jungmann said.
Police officer Paul Oelrich was the first arriving officer and began CPR. Then paramedics began advanced life-support assessment and care, resuscitating Wallace and transporting him to the hospital.
He has made a full recovery, Jungmann said.
Life Saving Awards were given to Oelrich, firefighter-paramedics Sam Butterfield and Chris Walker, and fire Capt.-paramedic Neal Dwyer.
Wallace and his wife, Paula, attended the presentation. She is a recent graduate of the Burnsville police Citizens Academy and a member of the city’s Mobile Volunteer Network.