21-year police veteran Louisiana is shot dead and a second officer is ‘fighting for his life’ after murder suspect opened fire when police responded to reports of gunfire
His unidentified colleague was also shot and was ‘fighting for his life in hospital’
The pair had responded to reports of gunfire in the area
Ronnie Kato, 36, is suspected of killing Curtis Richardson, 58, that morning
Kato was detained after a four-hour standoff with SWAT officers in which he barricaded inside a house
SWAT team members had been fired on and they returned fire but no one was reported hurt during those exchanges
The gunman identified as Ronnie Kato, 36, is suspected of killing his relative Curtis Richardson, 58, that morning.
The two unidentified officers who responded to the scene in a northern residential district in the city were shot. Both officers were transported to hospital where one of them later succumbed to his injuries.
The cops had initially gone to 1800 block of Pamela Drive around 12.30pm but received a tip the gunman was hiding a home on the 3100 block of Conrad Street.
The affidavit of probable cause released by police on Monday states that the suspect barricaded himself inside his house after the shooting, leading to a standoff that lasted several hours until he was ultimately taken into custody without incident Sunday evening and later booked into jail.
Baton Rouge Police Department officers gather at the site of a shooting that left one police officer dead and a wounded colleague fighting for life
After two officers were shot, one killed while trying to arrest murder suspect, the suspect was in custody after an hours-long standoff at a home in the area on Sunday afternoon
He added that SWAT team members had been fired on and they returned fire. No one was reported hurt during those exchanges.
At a news conference Sunday evening, the police chief said the slain officer was a 21-year law enforcement veteran and that the wounded colleague had seven years of police work, according to WBRZ-TV.
‘Our officers – talk about being public servants and the responsibility that comes along with being a law enforcement officer,’ Paul said. ‘This is a call no chief wants to get.’
Police released few details about the shooting of the two officers or events that led up to it. The chief said only that police continue to investigate.
The chief didn’t immediately say what charges Kato might face.
On Sunday afternoon, neighbors and onlookers crowded street corners behind police tape that cordoned off the area, according to media reports. Some of the bystanders wore masks against the coronavirus and others held up phones to record the crush of law enforcement vehicles at the site.
A different scene unfolded outside Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, where the officers had been whisked by ambulance. There, dozens of law enforcement officers held an impromptu vigil at the hospital, awaiting updates on the wounded officer’s condition.
Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul addresses the media on Sunday about the slayings
‘It is a tragic day in the Baton Rouge community. I am deeply saddened by the incident earlier that resulted in the loss of one of our bravest souls,’ Mayor-President Broome said in a statement.
‘My thoughts and prayers are with their families, with every member of the Baton Rouge Police Department, and with all public safety officers.
I ask our entire community to remember their families in your prayers, and may their sacrifice never be forgotten.
‘As we mourn this tragedy, let us reinforce that violence in our community, and particularly violence against those who serve and protect, is unacceptable. During this stressful time, both in our community and across the globe, it is imperative that we join together now more than ever,’ the police chief added.