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Wounded sergeant speaks at funeral for 3 fallen Burnsville first responders: "Rest easy, brothers"

Sgt. wounded alongside 3 fallen Burnsville responders pays tribute: "Rest easy, brothers"
Sgt. wounded alongside 3 fallen Burnsville responders pays tribute: "Rest easy, brothers" 04:54

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — A Burnsville police sergeant wounded in the same shooting that killed three first responders paid tribute to the men at their public memorial Wednesday.

Sgt. Adam Medlicott, 38, was shot and wounded during a standoff in Burnsville on Feb. 18. Burnsville police officers Paul Elmstrand and Matthew Ruge and firefighter/paramedic Adam Finseth were all killed in the shooting. The suspect died by suicide, officials said. The suspect's girlfriend and seven children made it out of the house safely. 

Medlicott was among the speakers at the public memorial. He said he was fortunate to see both Elmstrand and Ruge go "full circle" in their careers as police officers. 

"I supervised both of them on nights and was standing with them on their final call," Medlicott said. 


Medlicott said he didn't know Finseth well, but said he was witness to Finseth's heroic actions that day.

"I saw you run into the line of fire to save me and my guys," Medlicott said. "You are the bravest person I've ever known. I will forever be thankful."

Medlicott ended by saying they were there that day for seven children and "nothing could be more honorable."

"Rest easy, brothers," Medlicott said before leaving the stage.

Medlicott was released from the hospital the day after the deadly shooting. He's been with the police department for nearly a decade. He was named Burnsville's Officer of the Year in 2020 and was promoted to sergeant in 2022.

RELATED: Who were the officers and paramedic fatally shot in Burnsville?

Medlicott is also a drug recognition expert who supervises community service officers.


Hello, I am Sgt. Adam Medlicott of the Burnsville Police Department. I want to thank you all for attending today to honor and remember our fallen heroes. I would like to talk briefly and share a few stories about my partners and friends Paul Elmstrand and Matthew Ruge. I supervised both of them on nights and was standing with them on their final call.

I was one of Paul's field training officers. Although I quickly realized how smart and thoughtful Paul was, he still had his moments. One day we were dispatched to a report of a theft in progress at Macy's. As we pulled up to the store, we saw a vehicle unoccupied and idling in front of the main entrance. Excitedly, Paul yells, "Look, it's the go-away vehicle." I kind of just looked at him in disbelief for a moment before saying, "It's getaway car, Paul."

Seemed like that story would come up every couple of weeks. And we would have a good laugh again. Paul was not a shy person. Many times he would bust into my office uninvited, sit down and make himself at home just to talk or pick my brain on something. Recently, he had been talking to me about the open sergeant position. He was considering putting in. He was asking questions about the testing process and what it was like to be a sergeant. Chief, I think Paul would have made an excellent sergeant. I'll miss our midnight talks, Paul.

I remember the very first call I went on with Matthew Ruge. I was training a new officer and Matt had just completed field training himself. We were dispatched to a young lady who was to start an addiction treatment program that day. A van was outside of her house to bring her to the facility, but she had sat down inside a closet and was refusing to leave. I watched Matt and the new officer that I was training work through this call for a while. And it was a disaster. They didn't know what to say, or how to say it. And I remember Matt looking back at me, I remember Matt looking back at me with a face that said, I don't know what else to do. That's when I had to step in and I took over all the talking. A little while later, I had talked this young lady out of the house and into the van for treatment. After the call, Matt walked up to me and said, "Thanks, Adam. Man, I really effed that one up." He used the real word, though. Like any other cop, I said back to him, "Yeah, you really did." But I also told him that he was young, and he was new to the profession. I'd been doing this for over a decade. You'll learn, you'll grow, you'll get a lot better.

I was standing next to him on his last call. But now it was Matt that was doing all the talking. And now it was me that was looking to him for the answer. I believed in him as a crisis negotiator. And everyone here should know he was doing an amazing job of it. You can't reason with evil. You didn't eff this one up, Matt.

I was fortunate enough to watch both of these officers go full circle, from two wide-eyed, excited new cops, one who didn't know it was called a getaway car and another who didn't know how to talk to someone in crisis, to an officer who knew the job so well he was ready to promote and another who had just taken over a scene for multiple hours as a crisis negotiator. 

Finseth, I didn't know you as well as the other two, so unfortunately I don't have any intimate stories to share with you. But I saw you run into the line of fire to save me and my guys. You are the bravest person I've ever known. I will be forever thankful.

Elmstrand, Ruge, Finseth. We were there for seven children. Nothing could be more honorable. Rest easy, brothers.

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