BOZEMAN – The father-son duo suspected of killing a southwestern Montana sheriff’s deputy first shot at the deputy as he pursued them and then drove back to his car and fired more shots, prosecutors said.
The information is included in court documents charging Lloyd Barrus, 61, with accountability to deliberate homicide in the May 16 death of Broadwater County Deputy Mason Moore. Barrus made an initial appearance on the charge via video on Friday. He did not enter a plea.
Barrus faces 16 counts of attempted deliberate homicide and two counts of accountability to attempted deliberate homicide in Missoula County for firing at officers during a pursuit on Interstate 90 between Butte and Missoula after Moore’s body was found.
Barrus’ son, Marshall, died on May 17 after being shot in the head by officers at the end of a pursuit east of Missoula.
Marshall Barrus’ children told investigators their father and grandfather had been discussing a “suicide mission” against police, according to charging documents filed by Broadwater County Attorney Cory Swanson.
The children said they and their parents and grandfather were camping at Canyon Ferry Lake about 11 p.m. on May 16 when Marshall Barrus woke the children up by firing a gun in the campground. He got into a fight with the children’s mother before leaving with his father, they said.
The two returned to the campsite at about 2 a.m. on May 16 and began firing guns while looking for the children, court records said. He found them in the car with their mother and broke out the rear window when they refused to open the door. He hit one of the children in the face after failing to get them to accompany him and his father on their “suicide mission,” court records said.
Dash-cam video from Moore’s patrol car showed Lloyd Barrus’ sport utility vehicle passing him shortly after 2:30 a.m., and Moore following the SUV for about a minute before turning on his lights and siren. The vehicle did not stop. Moore had been following the SUV for about six minutes, at speeds of up to 100 mph, when he was shot, court records said.
Moore’s vehicle came to a stop at the side of the road near Three Forks. He appeared to regain consciousness after about three minutes. About a minute later, Moore’s car was hit with more than 15 gunshots, court records said.
Tire marks indicated the SUV had driven beyond Moore’s vehicle, then made a U-turn and went back toward the patrol car, the charging documents said.
Moore sustained two gunshot wounds to the head and one to the shoulder, an autopsy found. Investigators found 29 spent rifle cartridges at the scene.
Marshall Barrus was holding a rifle when he was shot at the end of a second chase between Butte and Missoula.