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Officials identify man killed by St. Paul police


St. Paul police have identified the man who died in an officer-involved shooting Monday afternoon as Justin Todd Tolkinen, 28, of St. Paul.

Tolkinen was armed with a rifle and believed to be wearing a bullet-resistant vest when he was fatally shot by St. Paul police Monday afternoon following an hour-long standoff. And police are now investigating if Tolkinen ever fired his gun.

Police were called to 411 White Bear Ave. around 3:20 p.m. after a witness reported a man carrying a weapon, MPR News reports. When police arrived, they found Tolkinen in an alley behind his home, reports note.

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Neighbors told several media outlets the man was screaming incoherently, cursing and waving the weapon before the SWAT team arrived at the scene. KARE 11 says the area near the home was put into lockdown.

Negotiators talked to him for about an hour before he was shot, witnesses told the Star Tribune.

"They shot him three times with the bean-bag gun and he stumbles, falls in his house, and that's when we hear gunshots from inside," a witness, who didn't want to be identified, told KARE 11.

Officials confirmed they attempted non-lethal means to end the standoff.

"It was followed up by lethal force, which was the shots fired by the officer, and he died on the scene," St. Paul police Sgt. Paul Paulos said Monday, according to MPR. "We called St. Paul fire medics immediately, to see if we could save the person. We could not."

Police initially said the Tolkinen died after an exchange of gunfire, but Paulos says officials are now investigating whether he actually fired his weapon, KSTP says.

The four officers involved in the shooting have been placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure. They were identified as Mark Farrington, Brian Hall, Patrick Murphy and Jermaine Davis. No officers were injured in the shooting.

This was the second fatal officer-involved shooting in St. Paul this year, the Star Tribune notes.

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