Update: Suspect In Sergeant Smith Homicide Booked Into Jail

Mitch Mortvedt
Assistant Director, Division of Criminal Investigation

April 21, 2021

GRUNDY CENTER, Iowa - On Wednesday, April 21, 2021, Michael Thomas Lang of Grundy Center was released from University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and transported by law enforcement authorities to the Grundy County Sheriff's Office where he made his initial appearance. Lang, age 41, has been charged in the shooting death of Iowa State Patrol Sergeant Jim Smith in an attempt to arrest Lang who was barricaded in his home. 

Lang has been charged with the following offenses:

  • First-Degree Murder, a Class A Felony, resulting in the death of Sergeant Jim Smith.
  • Attempt to Commit Murder, a Class B Felony, unlawfully and intentionally attempted to cause the death of Troopers in the wheeled armored personnel carrier. 
  • Assault On A Peace Officer, a Class D Felony, resulting from the assault of a Grundy Center police officer with the intent to inflict serious injury upon the officer. 

Michael Thomas Lang Complaint & Affidavit 

Lang has been transported to the Black Hawk County Jail where he is being held on a $3,000,000 cash bond. 

Note: As with any criminal case, a charge is merely an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

PHOTO: Michael Lang

Link to Michael Lang photo


The Iowa Department of Public Safety (DPS) is the largest law enforcement agency in the state. It includes six divisions and several bureaus, all working together with local, state and federal government agencies and the private sector, to keep Iowa a safe place by following our core values: leadership, integrity, professionalism, courtesy, service and protection. Divisions within the Iowa DPS: Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa State Fire Marshal Division, Iowa Division of Intelligence and Fusion Center, and Administrative Services Division. The Department of Public Safety is led by the Commissioner who is appointed by the Governor.