DES MOINES, Iowa -- The man accused of murdering two metro police officers has now been formally charged with two counts of first-degree murder.
Scott Michael Greene, 46, of Urbandale, is accused of killing Des Moines Police Sgt. Tony Beminio and Urbandale Officer Justin Martin early Wednesday. Police say the two officers were shot several times while they sat in separate squad vehicles.
Greene was identified as a suspect in the murders and about eight hours after the shooting he was found in Dallas County, in a rural area south of Redfield. He has been hospitalized since then after he suffered a flare-up of a pre-existing medical condition.
He was released from Mercy Hospital shortly after noon Thursday and taken to the Des Moines Police Department for questioning. At 1:45 p.m., police informed Channel 13 they have officially charged him with first-degree murder for the shooting deaths of officers Beminio and Martin. Des Moines police note that Greene was secured into custody using the handcuffs belonging to officers Beminio and Martin.
At a news conference Thursday morning, Des Moines Police Chief Dana Wingert didn’t hold back his anger about the case.
"What happened yesterday was the calculated murder of two law enforcement officers. Plain and simple, that's the reality. If someone wants to argue that reality, my office is two doors down," Wingert said.
Because of Greene’s hospitalization police had been unable to speak with him about the case.
"There hasn't been any conversation. We can't start talking to him until he is released from the hospital. We have to follow this legal process the way it is supposed to be done and he's got rights. So we haven't had any conversation with him,” said Sgt. Paul Parizek.
At the morning news conference police also released that a rifle, believed to have been used in the attacks, was located near where Greene was found in Dallas County Wednesday. Police say a specially trained explosives detection dog located the gun and if it hadn’t, humans likely wouldn’t have found it.
Funeral services for Sgt. Beminio and Officer Martin have not been finalized yet but police hope to have plans solidified sometime Thursday.