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Suicide of Terry Rossland

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Nationality  American

Full Name  Terry Lee Rossland
Born  June 21, 1952 (1952-06-21) Silver Bow County, Montana, U.S.
Cause of death  Suicide by drug overdose
Died  9 October 1990, Butte, Montana, United States

The attempted suicide of terry rossland

Terry Lee Rossland (June 21, 1952 – October 9, 1990) was an American man from Butte, Montana, known for loading his car full of gasoline and pipe bombs in 1989, and then detonating the bombs in his car while he sat inside of it. Rossland was attempting suicide due to personal issues he was facing at the time. He managed to survive the suicide attempt, but he successfully took his life a year later by a drug overdose. His suicide attempt in his car is well known as it was filmed by bystanders. The footage of the explosion has been well shown in the media on numerous television programs relating to crime and extraordinary events caught on camera.


The attempted suicide of terry rossland


On Wednesday, December 20, 1989, Terry Rossland, a man with a history of mental illness, loaded his Dodge Colt full of gasoline and pipe bombs with the intention of committing suicide. Rossland was depressed over his pending divorce with his wife and was despondent over the marital problems he was facing. He had also recently lost his job and was unstable due to the amount of painkillers he had taken. He attracted the attention of authorities by robbing a pharmacy of diazepam and codeine. He then led police on a thirty-minute chase at slow speeds. He drove to a street in Butte, Montana, where police cordoned off his vehicle. When police surrounded his car, Rossland revealed it was loaded with pipe bombs and gasoline. Rossland demanded to speak to his wife and children, and threatened to take his own life if his demands weren't met. Police locked down the entire area and a standoff began. As it was five days before Christmas, the area was packed with people Christmas shopping. Bystanders watched the event unfold and began filming the incident. Sheriff Bob Butorovich, Lieutenant Bob Lee and Sergeant Dan Hollis, all of whom had known Rossland for years and were friends with him, approached his car and began negotiating with him. Butorovich spoke with Rossland while Lee deflated one of Rossland's tyres to stop him from fleeing. Forty-five minutes passed and after repeated attempts to get Rossland to surrender, Rossland finally detonated the pipe bombs and the car exploded. Butorovich and Lee were both stood directly next to the car as it exploded. They managed to escape with only minor injuries. After the explosion, Rossland managed to survive as well, but he was set ablaze and was in excruciating pain. He opened his car door and fled on foot while still on fire. Fire crews rushed to Rossland's aid and put out the fire. The fire in Rossland's vehicle then spread to the back of his car and caused the remaining pipe bombs to explode. Rossland received emergency medical care and survived the suicide attempt with over seventy percent of his body burned.


Rossland was flown to a specialist burn unit several states away and went through months of intensive care. Afterwards, he was extradited back to Butte to stand trial for his crime. Butorovich personally escorted Rossland back through the airport when Rossland returned. Rossland was due to face trial in late 1990, but before his trial even began, Rossland successfully took his own life by a drug overdose. He took his life at his home in Butte, on Tuesday, October 9, 1990. He was found dead inside a shed behind his house and had been wearing headphones. He was thirty-eight years old at the time of his death.

Lieutenant Bob Lee, one of the police officers who had negotiated with Rossland, died on Friday, December 6, 2013, at the age of sixty-eight.

In popular culture

The footage of Rossland exploding his car and attempting suicide has been shown on many television programs relating to crime and extraordinary events caught on camera. It has been shown on: Reality TV, World's Wildest Police Videos (Season 3, Episode 9), World's Most Dangerous Police Videos, the History Channel, Shockwave, the 1993 shockumentary film, Traces of Death, and the 1998 shockumentary film, Banned from Television. It was also shown widely on the news at the time of the event.


Suicide of Terry Rossland Wikipedia

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