“It’s Unimaginable:” Father of Suspected Trooper Murderer Speaks Out

IRONS, Mich. — Jack Knysz says nothing could prepare him for what happened Monday night.

He says he received a call from police asking him where his truck was.  He told them his 19-year-old son Eric had it.  That’s when he learned Michigan State Police Trooper Paul Butterfield had been shot while making a traffic stop on that truck.

“The troopers came over and asked if I would help and I went there and I was at the scene for a little over 12 hours trying to help them.”

He said he helped police because he wanted to clear his son’s name and give them all the information he could.  But, the more he learned the more suspicious he said he became.

Jack says Eric’s 21-year-old wife, Sarah was in the car with him when they were pulled over in Northern Mason County.  He tells us she’s six months pregnant with the couple’s first child and that they’ve been married a little over a year.

Jack told us he believed the gun used to kill Trooper Butterfield was his and that Eric had stolen it without permission.  He says Eric didn’t own a gun.

“Supposedly he went to buy a car and they reported it stolen,” Jack said.  He says Eric asked to borrow his truck to go to Ludington for a doctor’s visit and stopped to look at a car for sale in Walhalla on the way.  That car he says they looked at was the same car Jack believes Eric and Sarah were found in at the gas station in Dublin.

“None of it makes sense, I mean, the troopers have all these facts so you have to go by the facts,” Jack said.

He’s a retired police officer and Vietnam veteran and says he knows firsthand what it’s like to lose a fellow officer.

“Being a police officer I know how they feel and it’s just the worst day of your life,” he said.  “Our family and our hearts and our prayers go out know to him and his family.”

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