BCA releases identity of man from Nov. 30 standoff at ABC station
(ABC 6 News) – The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension identified the victim in the Nov. 30 standoff with law enforcement Wednesday.
According to a Dec. 6 release, William Lee Carter, 34, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound last week.
The BCA released the following statement.
The Southern Minnesota Regional Medical Examiner’s Office has identified the man who died Nov. 30 during a standoff with Rochester police. William Lee Carter, 34, of Rochester, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, according to the medical examiner.
Carter made several phone calls early in the day Nov. 30 threatening to hurt himself and others, according to the preliminary investigation by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA). Police located Carter in his vehicle parked outside of a strip mall. A lengthy standoff began, during which police tried to negotiate with Carter. After hearing a shot from inside the vehicle, officers deployed various less-than-lethal rounds in an attempt to get him to leave the vehicle. Carter fired a handgun at officers several times, striking a police vehicle. Officers heard another shot from inside Carter’s vehicle, where he was later found dead. At no time did a police officer fire their service weapon.
Crime scene personnel recovered a handgun from inside Carter’s vehicle. This incident was captured on numerous cameras, including body-worn, squad and surveillance cameras from the nearby businesses. BCA agents are reviewing that footage as part of the ongoing investigation.
The Rochester Police Department asked the BCA to investigate this incident. Once the investigation is complete, it will be presented to the Olmsted County Attorney’s Office for review.Minnesota Department of Public Safety, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension
The BCA is still investigating the incident.
(ABC 6 News) – At around 9:20 a.m. on Nov. 30, 2023, ABC 6’s sister-station in the Twin Cities, KSTP, received a call from a man in crisis stating they intended to take their life at East Park in Rochester.
KSTP then notified Rochester Police Department and ABC 6 of the call at 9:32 a.m., adding that the man intended to also fire upon officers, if they approached him.
ABC 6 then dispatched reporter Theodore Tollefson to East Park, but reported he did not see police presence or any sign of distress.
A little after 2 p.m., a burgundy mini-van parked in front of the garage door of the ABC 6 News station.
Police followed soon after.
More officers then arrived, blockading the mini-van, securing the scene at the TJ Maxx Plaza.
Police then confirmed the individual within the mini-van was the same man that called KSTP.
The ABC 6 office and surrounding businesses then went under lockdown under direction of police.
Rochester Police informed the public that the man threatened to shoot himself, police and anyone who walked by his vehicle.
RPD stated the man posed no active threat to the outside public.
At around 3:40 p.m., RPD Chief James Franklin held a brief press conference explaining the situation to the public.
According to RPD, the Crisis Negotiating Unit spent several hours communicating with him.
“To the best of my knowledge he has not made any active threats to any TV station,” said Franklin. “He has used a multitude of different communication methods, including social media and phone calls to different news outlets making different threats.”
ABC 6 Anchor Robin Wolfram spoke with the girlfriend of the man. She said she was certain he would not “do something like this.”
Throughout the rest of the evening, the man stayed within his vehicle while police and other emergency response teams surrounded.
Periodically, the man emerged from the sunroof of his vehicle holding a handgun to himself, while speaking to officers.
Just before 5 p.m., officers lifted the lockdown for businesses other than ABC 6.
A little before 6 p.m., officers utilized a flash and tear gas near the man’s vehicle.
At 6:08 p.m., ABC reporters Tollefson and Jordan Samson stated they heard gunshots. RPD later clarified returned fire as pepperballs, not live ammunition.
According to Franklin, no RPD officers returned fire after two shots were fired by the man.
At 6:20 p.m. officers began approaching the man’s vehicle.
At 6:45 p.m., officers told Tollefson the man had passed away, from allegedly self-inflicted wounds.
At around 7:30 p.m., officers determined the scene all clear and lifted the lockdown on the ABC 6 News station.
No officers were injured.
The investigations by the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension began late Nov. 30.
If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, please call the Mental Health Crisis line at 988.