On May 4, 2019, St. Louis County Deputies Jason Kuhnly and Troy Fralich were placed in a situation which necessitated the use of deadly force in the course of their work, said St. Louis County Attorney Mark Rubin.
“Their actions taken in self-defense of both themselves and others, resulted in the death of Timothy Russell Majchzak, who was pronounced dead at the scene,” said Rubin. “A later examination by the St. Louis County Medical Examiner confirmed that he died of multiple gunshot wounds.”
The incident was investigated by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA). Per BCA protocol, the file was submitted to Rubin to determine whether the actions of the law enforcement officers were justified and therefore legal under Minnesota State Statute Section 609.066.
Because of the relationship of Fralich to a member of the County Attorney’s staff, Rubin called upon retired Assistant St. Louis County Attomey Gordon Coldagelli of Eveleth for the initial review of the matter.
After attomey Coldagelli’s review, Rubin then requested Cook County Attorney Molly Hicken to do a second review of the case. This two-tier outside review has been completed.
The reports of attorney Coldagelli and County Attorney Hicken conclude that the events which culminated in the death of Majchrzak were put into motion after Majchzak refused orders by Kuhnly after a high-speed motor vehicle chase to drop a handgun he was brandishing.
Rather than comply with Kuhnly’s directives, Majchzak chose instead to fire at Kuhnly, clearly placing the deputy in danger of great bodily harm or death. ln response, Kuhnly opened fire, fatally wounding Majchrzak.
Fralich, observing the encounter, was in his law enforcement vehicle and when he saw Majchzak raising his firearm again, responded to assist Kuhnly, and employed a means available at that time, his vehicle, to protect Kuhnly from great bodily harm or death at the hands of Majchzak.
Fralich drove into Majchzak, knocking him off the roadway and on to the ground. Both Coldagelli and Hicken concluded that the use of deadly force by both Kuhnly and Fralich was clearly necessary, justified, and authorized under the law.