Suspect identified in Maple Grove homicide, I-694 chase

The suspect in a rest stop shooting in Maple Grove and later a police chase along Interstate 694 in the early morning hours of Dec. 17 has been identified.

The Ramsey County Medical Examiner has identified the person who died during the incident as Johnathon Dean Mar, 18, of Kennewick, Wash. He died of blood loss due to multiple gunshot wounds.

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension investigation into the incident is ongoing. Additional information regarding this incident, including the names of the officers who fired their weapons, will be made available on Friday.

At about 1 a.m. on Dec. 17, Maple Grove Police responded to a report of a shooting at the rest stop area along Interstate 94 and Weaver Lake Road in Maple Grove. Upon arrival, Maple Grove officer located an adult male, dead of an apparent homicide. This person was identified by the Hennepin County Medical Examiners Office as Matthew Paul Maffei, 23, with no permanent address. Maffei died as a result of a gunshot wound of the head. Manner of death is homicide.

Mar was then observed at the scene in Maple Grove entering a vehicle. Officers received a description of the vehicle and observed the vehicle in the area of the I-94 and Interstate 694 splits. The Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office stated officers attempted to stop the vehicle, but the vehicle failed to stop and a pursue ensued. Mar’s vehicle eventually crashed on eastbound I-694 near Rice Street.

According the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, Mar then exited the vehicle brandishing a weapon. Officers fired and the suspect was pronounced dead at the scene. A Hennepin County Sheriff’s deputy and Brooklyn Center Police officer fired their weapons during the incident.

“These are situations that we in law enforcement take very seriously. Our goal is always to resolve public safety issues peacefully; unfortunately two lives were lost today and many other lives were tremendously impacted. Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved,” said Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek. “The incidents that occurred in both Maple Grove and Shoreview spanned several jurisdictions and required multiple law enforcement agencies to work together in partnership.”

The Maple Grove Police Department is investigating the apparent homicide in Maple Grove. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating the officer involved shooting.