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Published: Thu, March 02, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Suspect who cops say shot at pipeline killed after chase

Suspect who cops say shot at pipeline killed after chase

The Standing Rock protests, which generated global headlines and led to months of political and legal maneuvering, ended when law enforcement cleared the protesters' encampment and arrested dozens of people last Thursday.

Authorities chased him until the trooper executed a PIT maneuver, stopping the fleeing gunman's vehicle south of East Floral Park Drive, Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Steve Gaskins said.

The stretch of USA 41 was reopened late Sunday.

The Sabal Trail Transmission is a pipeline that will transfer over a billion cubic feet of natural gas from Alabama, through Georgia and into Central Florida.

Protesters believe that the pipeline will jeopardize the Floridan Aquifer, which is where most of Florida's drinking water comes from as well as damage other sensitive ecological areas. Last week, two protesters were arrested and charged with felony grand theft, trespassing on a construction site and criminal mischief after wedging themselves inside the pipeline.

As is typical in law-enforcement shootings, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating.

Neither deputies or the trooper, a four-year FHP veteran, were injured. Officials said that's when the suspect opened fire on deputies, who returned gunfire. The sheriff's office says he "engaged with law enforcement" before being fatally shot.

Chevy Matthews said he called 911 as soon as he saw the man shooting the pipeline.

On Twitter, David Williams, a reporter with the local Fox affiliate, said the damage would not delay construction.

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