The man suspected of fatally shooting Montana Highway Patrol Trooper David DeLaittre during a traffic stop on Wednesday near Three Forks later took his own life.

Trooper DeLaittre, 23, had been a member of the state agency for about two years.

"Trooper DeLaittre followed his father into public service. My thoughts and prayers are with a family that exemplifies what is good about Montana and the Highway Patrol," Trooper Col. Mike Tooley said. "David will be missed."

Gallatin County Sheriff's deputies found suspect Errol Brent Bouldin, 56, dead in his pickup truck early Thursday.

Bouldin and Trooper DeLaittre exchanged gunfire after the trooper attempted to ascertain why Bouldin's F-250 truck was parked and running in the middle of the roadway.

Law enforcement sources believe the two exchanged gunfire and Bouldin was injured in the exchange.

After being sworn in as a Montana Highway Patrol trooper on Nov. 13, 2008, DeLaittre was initially stationed in Chinook, and transferred to Bozeman in April this year. His father, Dennis DeLaittre, also worked for the Patrol from 1988 to 1997.

"My thoughts and prayers go out to Trooper DeLaittre's parents, his sisters and the circle of family and friends who loved him," Attorney General Steve Bullock said Thursday.

"It is at times like this that we get a glimpse of the risks law enforcement officers take on their shoulders on behalf of all Montanans. Today, that burden is heavy," Bullock added.

Bouldin's criminal record includes a warrant issued in 2009, seeking him on DUI charges for failing to appear in court.

Bouldin's ex-wife in Arizona told the Bozeman Daily Chronicle her former husband had become "bitter against life," after he nearly died from a rattlesnake bite. She last saw him in 2006.

DeLaittre is the eighth Montana trooper to die in the line of duty in the agency's 75-year history. Details of other fallen troopers are available online at the End of Watch web page.

Read the full story at BozemanDailyChronicle.com.

0 Comments