ROCHESTER, Minn. — UPDATE (May 7): The Southern Minnesota Medical Examiner’s Office has confirmed that the 63-year-old driver involved in the incident died by suicide due to two self-inflicted gunshot wounds to the head.
After a semi-truck vehicle inspection lasting about an hour and 45 minutes in Minnesota, the driver of the vehicle took two self-inflicted gunshots to the head. The driver was transported to St. Mary’s Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
An investigation of the incident is being conducted by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the Rochester Police Department.
According to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, troopers assigned to the Minnesota State Patrol Commercial Vehicle unit stopped the semi-truck for an inspection at Rochester’s Miracle Mile shopping center parking lot around 6:45 a.m. on Wednesday, May 5. At about 8:30 a.m., troopers attempted to detain the driver for failing to produce identification.
The inspection took place during the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) International Roadcheck, an initiative during which law enforcement steps up inspections of commercial motor vehicles. It is not clear whether this particular inspection was related to the road check.
Audio from a 911 call placed after the gunshots was released on local media outlets.
“He just shot himself, he just shot himself,” said one caller. “Get medical coming, get medical coming.”
“He looks like he’s slumped over,” another caller said.
“Can you see inside the cab at all through a freeway camera?” one caller asked dispatch.
“There’s signs in the way for that,” dispatch responded.
The Rochester Police Department said no troopers fired their weapons or were injured. The troopers conducting the inspection are currently on paid administrative leave.
An investigation is now underway by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and the Rochester Police Department. The BCA and Minnesota State Patrol were contacted for more information but did not respond to comment requests.
Anyone in crisis or who needs help is encouraged to call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-8255. The Hotline provides free, confidential support 24/7.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.