Crime & PoliceNews

North Iowa Troopers Killed in Line of Duty to be Memorialized

Two Iowa State Patrol troopers who died in the line of duty while serving in north central and northeast Iowa will be honored this week.

Governor Kim Reynolds, Lt. Governor Adam Gregg, Department of Public Safety Commissioner Stephan Bayens and the state of Iowa will honor Trooper Ted Benda and Sergeant Jim K. Smith for making the ultimate sacrifice. The names of Benda and Smith will be added to the Iowa Peace Officer Memorial during a special ceremony at 10 a.m. Friday in Des Moines. The public is invited to join in person or watch the ceremony on the Iowa State Patrol Facebook LIVE page.

Benda, a Waukon native, died last October while he was responding to assist the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office with a call. En route, while driving at a high rate of speed, Benda crashed his patrol car trying to avoid a deer and died from his injuries.

Smith died last April in a shootout while attempting to end a standoff in the Grundy Center home of Micheal Lang, who had barricaded himself inside the residence following a high-speed vehicle pursuit. During the exchange of gunfire, Smith was shot and killed. Lang has been charged with first-degree murder and is expected to argue he act in self-defense when his trial starts n Monday, May 9th, in Hamilton County. 

The Iowa Attorney General’s Office has ruled the use of deadly force by officers against Lang was justified and reasonable.

Mark Pitz

News Director/Weekdays 10am to 2pm on 95.9 KCHA
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