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Charges: Man fatally shot stranger from St. Cloud after argument at Minneapolis gas station

The two men didn't know each other.
stop n shop minneapolis

A 33-year-old Minneapolis man is accused of fatally shooting another man in the head after a confrontation at a gas station last week. 

Chaz Eric Stubblefield, 33, of Minneapolis, is charged in Hennepin County District Court with second-degree murder in connection to the fatal shooting of Ryan Decker, 46, of St. Cloud, outside a Stop N' Shop gas station on East Lake Street in Minneapolis on Wednesday, March 24. 

According to the criminal complaint, officers responded to Stop N' Shop at 11:58 p.m. on a report of a shooting. When they arrived, they found Decker, who had a gunshot wound to his right eye and didn't have a pulse. 

He was pronounced dead at the Hennepin County Medical Center at 12:36 a.m. on March 25 Decker died of a gunshot wound to the head, the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office said.

A witness, who identified herself as Decker's friend, told police Decker came from St. Cloud to help her move. They'd stopped at Stop N' Shop so Decker could get a pop, but the security guard was "being an ass" to Decker.

Surveillance video shows Decker walked into the store without a mask and was told by the security guard he needed one in order to remain inside, charges state. 

Decker was leaving the store when he made "slight physical contact" with Stubblefield, who was in line, and who turned and punched Decker in the back, charges state. They get into a verbal confrontation and Stubblefield followed him into the parking lot. 

Charges say Decker was opening the passenger side door when Stubblefield accused him of using a racial slur, which he denied, the witness said. Stubblefield then spits in Decker's face, surveillance video shows. Decker punches toward Stubblefield, who raised a gun toward Decker's head, and then shoots him before leaving. 

In an interview with police, Stubblefield admitted to shooting Decker, saying he bumped into him and Stubblefield said, "you can say excuse me." Decker responded saying "[expletive] you [expletive]." He said he followed Decker out of the store and asked him what he said, to which Decker said a racial slur again. 

Stubblefield told police he threw the gun in the river after the shooting, charges state.

An obituary for Decker says his "life was taken from us too early by a senseless act of violence."

He is described as having a big heart who loved exploring, noting his reminders were "live life, get outdoors, have fun and send me pictures." Decker was "determined, gentle, fun and brilliant," the obit added. He was a professional tree trimmer and landscaper, adding he was a perfectionist with a "wonderful smile."

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