Incident DetailsCause of Death:
Trooper Cory Elson was shot and killed after making a traffic stop in the rear of an auto parts store in Decatur.
As he exited his vehicle, the suspect opened fire with an automatic rifle. One of the first rounds penetrated the cruiser's door and struck Trooper Elson in the leg. He retreated to the rear of his cruiser and returned fire. The suspect continued to fire at Trooper Elson, firing as many as 36 rounds, fatally wounding him. An employee of a business was shot and wounded during the gunfire but was able to call 911.
The 38-year-old suspect was able to flee the scene but was captured the next day. In July 2000, he was sentenced to life in prison without parole plus 20 years for operating a machine gun after entering a plea agreement to be spared the death penalty.
Trooper Elson, from Fort Wayne, had recently graduated from the academy and was assigned to the Fort Wayne post. He was survived by his wife, sister and parents.
Trooper Elson was the second of three troopers within 11 months to be killed in the line of duty from the 56th ISP Recruit Academy, which graduated in December 1998. He was a roommate of Trooper Richard Gaston who was killed in the line of duty on March 4, 1999.