Crime

Man who killed St. Louis County officer from Edwardsville is sentenced to life in prison

Fallen St. Louis County police officer is laid to rest in Godfrey

Hundreds turned out Thursday to honor fallen police Officer Blake Snyder, who was buried at Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery in Godfrey, Illinois. Snyder, 33, was shot after responding to a call just after 5 a.m. last Thursday. He had served with t
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Hundreds turned out Thursday to honor fallen police Officer Blake Snyder, who was buried at Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery in Godfrey, Illinois. Snyder, 33, was shot after responding to a call just after 5 a.m. last Thursday. He had served with t

The man who shot and killed St. Louis County police officer Blake Snyder in 2016 has been sentenced to life plus 27 years in prison without parole.

Trenton Forster, 20, of St. Louis, was found guilty of first-degree murder, second-degree assault on a law enforcement officer and two counts of armed criminal action in the shooting death of Snyder, who was originally from Edwardsville, in February. On Thursday, Judge Kristine Kerr told Forster he’d have to serve the rest of his life in prison for the crime, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

On Oct. 6, 2016, Snyder responded to a disturbance in the 10700 block of Arno Drive in St. Louis. According to the Post-Dispatch, prosecutors said Forster was suicidal, angry and high on drugs when he shot and killed Snyder. Forster’s attorney’s agreed that he’d killed the officer, but argued that he was incapable of committing premeditated murder because of his history of mental illness and tried to bring the first-degree murder charge to second-degree.

Jurors in February disagreed with that argument, however, and convicted Forster of first-degree murder after four hours of deliberation.

At the sentencing hearing Thursday, Forster said he hadn’t planned on speaking, but wanted to apologize to Snyder’s family after hearing victim impact statements, KMOV 4 reported.

“I’m not a piece of [expletive],” he said, and added that prosectors “did him wrong.”

Judge Kerr then cut Forster off and handed down the sentence.

Snyder left behind a wife and son who was 2 years old at the time of his death. He was a four-year veteran of the police department.

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Hana Muslic has been a public safety reporter for the Belleville News-Democrat since August 2018, covering everything from crime and courts to accidents, fires and natural disasters. She is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s College of Journalism and her previous work can be found in The Lincoln Journal-Star and The Kansas City Star.
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