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Shocking Video of Maquoketa Shootout

MAQUOKETA, IA (CBS2/FOX28) Two weeks ago, an early morning shootout between a suicidal man and a Maquoketa police officer rocked a small Jackson County community. The exchange ended with both the officer, Sergeant Brendan Zeimet and the man, Aaron Scott, with gunshot wounds.

Scott was later found dead in his truck after leaving the scene, an autopsy shows that he shot himself in the head. Officials released dash cam video from that incident and fleshed out the detailed about what happened before and after the shooting.

People in Maquoketa say its the kind of place where everyone knows everybody else, making the footage from the officers dash cam that much more shocking.

"You'll see initially the squad car going down the street and he'll make a U-turn on Niagara street, the actual traffic stop happens on West Grove, said Iowa DCI Special Agent Matt George.

Police say there was a call just a few minutes before the shooting involving a truck similar to the one Aaron Scott was sitting in. They think that peeked Sergeant Zeimets interest, leading to a welfare check for the man inside.

"As Sergeant Zeimet is approaching the truck, you'll see Aaron Scott get out, the door opens, and the door is actually blocking some of Sergeant Zeimet's view, said George.

But just as the dash cam show the barrel of an assault rifle poking out from the bottom of the door, Sergeant Zeimet notices it too. The officer backpedals for cover while ordering Scott to drop the rifle. Sparks flying off the hood of the car show where Zeimets bullets hit Sergeant Zeimets patrol car, disabling the vehicle right away.

"You'll see the gun that Aaron Scott has go from a 45 degree angle pointing at the ground up to his waist and gunfire ensues at that time, said George.

Police say Sergeant Zeimet believes he shot first. He has been cleared by the investigation, saying he used reasonable force in opening fire on Scott, knowing he was outgunned as the shooter brought the rifle to the shooting position.

"He took the action he felt was necessary to protect himself, said George.

That resulted in an exchange of more than 20 shots, seven from Sergeant Zeimet and more than 14 from Scott, on a small residential block with families sleeping just a few hundred feet away. It had local residents and Maquoketa Chief of Police Brad Koranda thankful that it wasnt so much worse.

"We had two other officers on that night and a dispatcher, that did a great job and did all they had to do to survive, said Chief Koranda.

Police say Scott had a history of mental illness, including a thwarted suicide attempt in 2007. He also had four guns in his car at the time of the shooting. He was in legal possession of all of them since he had a permit to carry concealed weapons from Jones County.
 
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