Teen Charged in Fatal Police Shooting of Blake Snyder

A St. Louis County police officer was fatally shot Thursday after responding to a report of a disturbance, and prosecutors charged an 18-year-old man in the killing.

Officer Blake Snyder, 33, was shot point-blank after encountering the man accused of causing the disturbance in a normally quiet, middle-class suburban neighborhood in Green Park, St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said.

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Trenton Forster, who faces first-degree murder and armed criminal action charges in the early morning shooting, was inside a car when he shot Snyder, authorities said. A second officer arrived moments later and fired at Forster, striking him several times and wounding him, they said.

County prosecutor Robert McCulloch, when announcing the charges against Forster on Thursday afternoon, said more charges are "highly likely." He said Forster remained in stable condition and is expected to survive. Forster will be jailed on a $1 million bond once he's released from the hospital.

Police were called shortly after 5 a.m. about a reported disturbance in Green Park, a community of about 2,600 residents in Missouri's south St. Louis County. Belmar said a young man was banging on the door of a house and demanding to be let in. The man had a relationship with a young woman who was inside the home, police spokesman Shawn McGuire said.

Snyder and another officer, whose name hasn't been released, were dispatched in separate cars. Snyder arrived first.

Belmar said Snyder saw the man inside a car and ordered him to show his hands. McCulloch said Forster shot Snyder once with a 9 mm pistol that was found at the scene.

Snyder, who was married and the father of a 2-year-old boy, was pronounced dead at a hospital a short time later.

Forster and the officer who shot him are white, as was Snyder, who had been with the department for four years.
The circumstances that led to the shooting remain under investigation. Belmar said the suspect was the subject of an earlier drug case in which Snyder was an investigator.

However, McCulloch said later that Forster was out on bond in relation to a pending felony marijuana-possession case that did not involve Snyder.

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