Warrants detail attempted car theft prior to chase, shooting - KMSP-TV

Warrants detail attempted car theft prior to chase, fatal shooting

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As loved ones look for answers as to why police shot and killed man and a woman who had just begun a new relationship, Fox 9 News is learning more about recent criminal charges the two faced in Olmsted County.

Although the events that culminated in the fatal gunfire along Highway 212 on Friday remain a mystery, it appears that 36-year-old Matthew Serbus and 34-year-oldDawn Pfister were trying to avoid police before the high-speed chase began.

Warrants in Olmsted County show the duo failed to appear in court last month after they were arrested in connection with an attempted car theft.

Jim Anderson owns All Vehicle Sales along Highway 52 in Rochester, and he told Fox 9 News both Serbus and Pfister came to his dealership on the morning of Jan. 10 and said they wanted to buy a car.

"It was a cold day. They wanted to drive stuff, so I warmed them up quick," Anderson recalled. "They must have took 'em off my board when I went out quick."

Anderson said the couple stole two sets of keys that were hanging in his office.

"I called police, told them I thought they were going to come back and steal the cars at night," Anderson said. "Sure enough, they tried."

Police say his instincts proved correct. After the dealership closed, Serbus came back and tried to get inside a silver 1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee -- but officers were waiting and arrested him. When officers found Pfister at a nearby hotel, they found the other set of keys.

"They had the keys to another car that I had just sold just half an hour before they came," Anderson said.

Serbus was charged with one count of attempted motor vehicle theft and two counts of conspiracy to commit motor vehicle theft. Pfister was only charged with the latter, but neither appeared at their court hearing. On Jan. 27, warrants were issued for their arrest.

On Friday morning, cameras caught the couple being chased by police before the red Saab they were in crashed. Anderson told Fox 9 News that car didn't come from his dealership.

After the crash, both Serbus and Pfister were able to get out of the car. Police surrounded the couple, shots were fired and both collapsed to the ground with multiple gunshot wounds. No officers were injured, and four have been placed on administrative leave. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating the shooting.

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