MADISON, Wis. – Chief Shon Barnes of the Madison Police Department in Wisconsin said Monday that a man wanted in a homicide was found dead in a Kwik Trip bathroom Friday following a confrontation with police that involved an exchange of gunfire.
Madison Police said, “Officers responded to a convenience store in the 3500 block of E Washington Ave in an attempt to apprehend a wanted suspect (39-year-old male) in a homicide case. Subject located and a confrontation took place between the subject and officers. Shots were fired by the subject and an MPD officer. The subject was later located inside a bathroom deceased.”
The man was reportedly wanted after a woman was found dead Wednesday in her East Side residence. Detectives on Friday identified Justin D. Kopmeyer, 39, as the suspect in the homicide, Wisconsin State Journal reported.
Neither the Madison Police Department nor the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) confirmed the suspect and the dead man are the same person, according to the news outlet.
The Dane County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the homicide victim as Kristin L. Schmitt, 41, on Saturday. However, her cause of death remains pending.
Barnes said that neighbors heard a disturbance at the residence in a multi-unit building in the 3400 block of Richard Street in the Starkweather neighborhood about 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday. Responding officers discovered the woman who was pronounced dead at the scene, according to authorities.
DCI is investigating the officer-involved shooting, which occurred about 4:10 p.m. on Friday. They said Madison police officers attempted to apprehend a wanted suspect at the business. During the interaction, the man produced a weapon. One officer deployed a Taser but it did not have the desired impact.
Another officer fired in the direction of the suspect, who then barricaded himself in a bathroom. Officers heard gunfire in the bathroom and later found the suspect dead, according to DCI.
A witness, Jesus Nolasco said he was inside the Kwik Trip making a food purchase when a man being chased by police came running through the business.
“Suddenly a (man) came in and in that moment all you could hear was screams, coming from the fridges in the back,” Nolasco said. “A gun went off.”
During the gunfire, Nolasco grabbed his wife and daughter while taking cover behind the shelves until the situation was deemed safe to come out, according to the Wisconsin State Journal.
No one else was injured during the encounter.