Home / Badge Abuse / “Get Your Hands Where I….” BOOM! Cop Shoots Unarmed Man Before Finishing His Command

“Get Your Hands Where I….” BOOM! Cop Shoots Unarmed Man Before Finishing His Command

Eden Prairie, MN — On June 15, 2015, Matthew Hovland-Knase was allegedly driving his motorcycle at excessive speeds down a two-way street. After being clocked at speeds over 110 miles per hour, Sergeant Lonnie Soppeland gave chase and pulled him over.

Hovland-Knase did not attempt to run, was unarmed, non-violent, and posed no threat to Soppeland at all when the officer jumped out of his cruiser with his gun drawn. As Soppeland exited the cruiser, he yelled, “Get your hands where I….” BOOM — and before he could finish the sentence, he’d shot the unarmed motorcyclist.

“I’m bleeding,” screams Hovland-Knase after this overzealous cop squeezed off a round into the unsuspecting motorist.

Those who’ve been trained to use firearms know that you should keep your finger straight and off the trigger until you are ready to fire. If anyone should know this, it’s a police officer. But at that moment, on that night, officer Soppeland forget one of the most important rules in handling a firearm.

Immediately after he nearly killed a man, officer Soppeland said, “I’m not going to say anything right now, but was not intentional. I can tell you that.”

Intentional or not, this man fired a deadly projectile at an unarmed individual who meant him no harm.

After Soppeland had been granted a cool down period of three days, he was finally interviewed by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office. During the interview, Soppeland told a detective, “As I was giving commands, I drew my firearm with my right hand, I planned to steady it with my left hand. When my hands made contact, the firearm discharged once unintentionally. It was not my conscious choice…I could feel the effect of the adrenaline.”

Notice how he blamed the firearm. According to Soppeland, he did not discharge the firearm, ‘the firearm discharged.’

In a loaded question, which was obviously used to steer the investigation in favor of the officer, the detective then asked Soppeland whether firearm training 20 days before the shooting, when Soppeland fired 50 to 100 rounds, was a factor. Soppeland replied, “Yes, I feel the muscle memory from that recent training of squeezing the trigger contributed to the unintentional discharge during a high-stress situation.”

Luckily it wasn’t a church van full of innocent children that Soppeland pulled over that fateful night — as his ‘muscle memory’ could have killed them.

As soon as the investigation had begun, it was then over — Soppeland was taken off of paid vacation and immediately placed back on regular duty.

Imagine for a moment that Soppeland was not granted a badge and a uniform from the town of Eden Prairie, and he attempted to use the same excuse for discharging a firearm at an unarmed, nonviolent individual. Do you feel that he would have been granted the same leniency?

What if Soppeland was the owner of a private shooting range and he accidentally shot one of his customers? Would that shooting range be opened the next day? Would Soppeland ever be able to operate a shooting range again? The short answer is, no. The range would likely be closed down, and Soppeland would be facing charges of negligence, at a minimum.

However, because Soppeland is a police officer, he not only faces no consequences but he was put back out on the street to do it again.

What this case illustrates is that police in America are subject to a different set of rules than the rest of us. Their ‘qualified immunity’ sets them above the same laws that apply to everyone else, and they are subsequently allowed to cause harm to others without the fear of repercussions.

There was one person who was charged in this incident, however, and that was Hovland-Knase. After being shot by Soppeland, Hovland-Knase was arrested and convicted of fleeing an officer.

Soppeland’s case is hardly unique, cops ‘accidentally’ shoot people quite often, and get away with it.

Last year, on Thanksgiving night, with his 23-year-old wife, Darien Ehorn in the passenger’s seat, Andrew Thomas left the Canteena Bar and was immediately pursued by Paradise police officer Patrick Feaster.

After Thomas lost control of the SUV, Officer Feaster then gets out of his car, gun drawn, and as Thomas attempts to get out of the vehicle, in a likely attempt to check on his wife, the cop shoots him in the neck.

When backup arrived on the scene, Feaster said nothing of discharging his firearm. For 11 minutes, Thomas lay bleeding out in the vehicle before anyone even found the shot.

Only when the commanding officer on the scene suggested an investigator return to the Canteena to find out if Thomas had been shot at the bar did Feaster reveal he’d pulled the trigger.

In spite of shooting a man in the neck and being caught red-handed trying to cover it up, Feaster faces zero consequences. Last month, Feaster walked.


Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world.

  • They always beating on people psychologically physically abusing people as well as murdering them.

  • sad

  • i have enough of seeing things like that. its good to share it and being opposite to it but now its enough. we need a god damn revolution

  • YOu drive your car left of center for 3 seconds and they nail you with a CARELESS DRIVING Moving violation. Cop shoots someone, where’s the CARELESS USE OF FIREARM charge?

    Having NO RULES OF ENGAGEMENT for cops is how they can let their trigger happy cops off scott free, all over the country. That cop should be charged like any civilian who had a drawn gun and shot someone, even unintentionally.

  • That’s so wrong

  • Good thing he admitted his mistake and helped the guy instead of covering his ass, finishing him off and planting a gun. He will definitely be doing some retraining.

    • Yeah right. They put him back on duty, I didn’t see anything about retraining…

  • ok so all i see is a bunch of posts and comments that go NO WHERE why don’t you guys stop commenting n work together to do something about this.
    informing people isn’t enough.
    we need to act

  • It seems to me it was not done with intent and he did help him after he shot him.. most would have froze up but he got the medical bag out…it happens he is out on the road by him self… not an excuse justa thought..

  • Dial 911, make a cop come

  • Did he at least get a 6 week paid vacation?

  • i’m sure the police investigated them selves. . . and you guessed it. found no wrong doing

  • I’m glad that the officer at least helped the man instead of letting him bleed to death.

  • Jezus… What kind of training do these cops get???

  • This is very, very sad. I’m glad the bullet wasn’t fatal. And while i see the individual acting as a cop fully at fault, i’ll still see this as an accident. I hope this will serve as a lesson to what can go wrong, when politicians over-tighten the rules on security. … And what inhibited mental pressure does do peace officers.

  • The cop blamed “muscle memory” from recent training for his gun going off… maybe he should be shot in the arm, the muscle memory of that pain might keep him from shooting any more innocent civilians….

  • Officer said, “I drew my firearm with my right hand,
    I planned to steady it with my left hand. When my hands
    made contact, the firearm discharged, once unintentionally.
    It was not my conscious choice…” AND “…the muscle memory
    from that recent training (20 days before) of squeezing
    the trigger contributed to the unintentional discharge,
    during a high-stress situation.” THIS UNCONTROLLED ACTION
    of a prospective officer, should have presented itself at
    a Police Academy, during training… The Officer candidate
    would have washed out, if not corrected. Officer is now a Sgt at Eden Prairie, which is only 20 minutes from Minneapolis MN. There is NO reason for insufficient qualification screening…

  • and people want to go to america …!!!

  • More proof we live in a fascist state. The USA fulfills all 14 points of a fascist country.

  • Bet he has a 1911 in his hand, if it was a glock,the guy would probably still be alive, one has a safety,the other doesnt.

  • The second story, was an obvious attempt at cover-up, by the officer in Paradise CA…

  • PIGS!

  • Why is everyone surprised? You do know who’s responsibility it is to clean the entire government right?

  • And they wonder why people lose respect for them.

  • PEOPLE shot PEOPLE! guns don’t, more regulation & training of the people not on firearms.

  • its called itchy trigger syndrome

  • For goodness sake! When will all of this shooting stop?!

  • Take away his gun and Just maybe give him a wooden spoon instead.

  • Clearly it was an accidental discharge.

  • accidental discharge,can happen when you handle your weapon like a complete jackass instead of a trained professional.US cops are the most jumpy in the world as each person they pull over could be carrying a gun aswell.This guy here may be a f*cktard, but at least there’s no real malignous intent,this looks indeed genuinly accidental.Not like those scum bastards who enjoy killing people’s pets for no reason whatsoever.

    • Yeah, that cop quickly got his medical bag to help patch him up. Still the cop should of had his gun raised at him with his finger on the trigger.

    • Brian Worden uhm,no,rest your finger on the trigger-guard,never ever on the trigger or this crap is what happens. ymmv depending on the weapon,but rules in US are the loosest around, if it’s on a hair-trigger defo dont rest your finger against it

  • Everyone can make a mistake, it’s called accidental discharge!

  • Time to eliminate those stupido cops.

  • Thats fucked and unacceptable. This is an example of a cop who should be fired, never allowed to return to a police job again and forfeit his pension. Thats how we fix this. Nothing less.

    • Million dollar lawsuitso change triaining, hiring, etc. SOMETIMES. LOL

    • I disagree, that is not a cop that should be fired, that is a cop that should be arrested and charged with attempted murder.

    • Heads should roll way up the chain if this is to be avoided in future. Heads, however, will not roll and this shit will happen daily until those responsible actually act in a responsible manner and actually take responsibility for these acts. Leaders of the free world?, I think not.

    • It was an act of aggregated assault and battery. Can you prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he was attempting to kill the man? He did not try to cover it up. He should miss work, attend his trials, seek legal council and serve the time for what he did. If he would like to discuss corruption and those involved, in his department, then we can bargain with him for a lesser sentence.

  • If I shot someone on accident would I face charges? That’s the only real relevant question after it was determined to be an accident.

  • SAME THING AS PARADISE, CALIF. EXCEPT VICTIM DIED!!!

  • The whole system is a cluster fuck. They let the most psychopathic sonofabitches get away with murder regardless of the danger they present to the public. This is why it is important to vote against the collective psychopathic Repulican, which are traitors and anti-American!

  • The allegedly was speeding…but cop shot the guy. Why not say the cop allegedly shot the guy?

  • I would agree, he did not have a grip, and it possibly did go off by accident, I was impressed how quickly he came to the victims aid and was not escalated. He seemed more panicked than the victim, but true, no excuse.

  • And they could have dismised the charges

  • Fuck that, that’s attempted murder and he should be charged and get 10 to 15 and never in this line of work again

  • Cmon guy, guns don’t kill people…sometimes tho GUNS can sometimes kill people tho. No wait, what?!?!

  • Dishonorable Discharge-Wade

  • and yet we keep reelecting the politicians who support and protect the cops who never have to answer for crimes. Politicians who are elected to control these people are empowering them to criminal acts and then punishing us for complaining about it. We keep reelecting these politicians and then have the gall to act surprised.

  • Really fuck up. He needs to go to prison.

  • How about we tie this stupid ass criminal to a post and empty a magazine in him.

  • Didn’t look to me like the cop shot him

  • Second video is worse. What is happening to our society????

  • Why would you pull a gun on a speeder anyway? Is the motorcycle a threat?

  • I don’t give a fuck if it’s intentional or not. He sounded like a decent cop, but you’d getting staples in your fucking noggin one dark night, from my Louisville slugger…

  • Just another protect and serve incident

  • He couldn’t wait to shoot him

  • American cops need reevaluated I think . I bet he gets a few weeks paid leave for shooting the poor guy .! What an asshole. So glad I do not live in America.

  • Recruiter: ‘you don’t smoke weed and don’t have a criminal record? Ok great here’s your uniform and your gun. Good luck ‘

  • “only cops and federal agents should be armed” they said. It’ll be just fine they said.

  • How can he get away with that? Mind blowing

  • Kelly Louise Taylor

  • horrible. Warren

  • These fucking pigs

  • Can’t get out the guy was just shot by this fat ass hole

  • Ty Shanaberg had a similar experience

  • At least the officer was genuinely concerned for the man’s injury and he helped him out.

  • What an ass hole pig

  • Lets face it there are a few sick people who like to kill other people and they are very good at hiding it.

  • Wow. Reading the comments, how many of have walked a beat? No? Then you don’t know what the hell yours talking about.

  • Dean HAll

    Fat ass should be charger and convicted of ATTEMPTED MURDER!!! The pig was obviously NOT a threat!

  • Dean HAll

    *kid

  • If firearms training was a factor in this “unintentional” shooting, then maybe that training is faulty, and whoever designed and prescribed that training should be prosecuted for negligence.

  • Dwight Wright

    Before anybody jumps to conclusions, one should do their research. This is the first article I read about this, so I don’t know all the aftermath. This article says nothing of the victim after the incident. Is he well? Well, (not just alive) as in fully functional, healed and mentally ok. Was there a lawsuit? Was there a hush settlement? That’s usually the case when cops get off with no repercussion. I don’t need a response, as I’m going to research more. I just want everybody to do the same. I just wish the writer included more information, but that’s expected when it’s a biased organization. Not saying bad, just biased.