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Slain Cold Spring officer's partner leaves job

  • Article by: MARY LYNN SMITH
  • Star Tribune
  • January 31, 2013 - 7:12 AM

The police officer who was on call with Cold Spring officer Thomas Decker when he was killed in November has resigned.

Greg Reiter, 39, of St. Joseph, a licensed police officer who was working part time for the Cold Spring department, submitted a brief resignation letter to the Stearns County city two weeks ago, said city administrator Paul Hetland. "He didn't give a reason," Hetland said.

Reiter's actions on the night of the shooting came under scrutiny in the weeks after Decker's death as investigators continued to search for the gun and a suspect who could be charged.

Moments after the Nov. 29 shooting behind Winners Bar, Reiter put his car into reverse and backed away from the gun-wielding shooter. Reiter lost visual contact and couldn't give investigators many details.

Within hours, Ryan Larson, a part-time Winners bartender, was arrested in his apartment above the bar but released days later without charges.

Authorities have since found the shotgun that killed Decker, and a man who had come under repeated questioning for the shooting killed himself. Eric J. Thomes, 31, was found hanged in a metal outbuilding near his rural Cold Spring home after a standoff with police.

The shotgun that killed Decker was found on property to which Thomes had access. But BCA officials stopped short of declaring Thomes the person who killed Decker.

Mary Lynn Smith • 612-673-4788

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