BATON ROUGE, La., July 17, 2016 – Police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, are under attack and at least two have been shot; however, their status is unknown. The shooting happened not far from the BR police headquarters, and it is still being called an active shooter situation, meaning that that shooter is still at large.
There is a massive manhunt for the shooter(s), and the FBI has been called in.
Updates as news is released.
AT 10:05 a.m. Baton Rouge Police spokesman Sgt. Don Coppola confirmed that several officers were shot by gunfire and that the scene is “contained.” Police are asking everyone to stay out of the area.
Further reports are that two Baton Rouge police officers shot on Sunday morning have died, as confirmed by William Daniel, the city’s chief administrative officer.
Baton Rouge is the community where Alton Sterling was shot and killed by police officers on July 5 while he was pinned to the ground outside a convenience store. The shooting was captured on video. Anger boiled over in the community as it appears on the tape Sterling was under the officers’ control and lethal force was not warranted.
Baton Rouge police have uncovered and arrested four persons in a plot to kill police officers that came about after the killing of five police officers in Dallas last week. The two adults and two juveniles, 12 and 13 years of age, did break into a local pawn shop and steal firearms in order, a captured unnamed 13-year-old male said, to kill police.
John Matthews, Community Safety Institute, says the shooting was an “ambush-style” attack.
Local station WAFB-TV reported that the officers were shot along Airline Highway near Old Hammond Highway, but didn’t specify the number. A witness told WBRZ-TV that a man was dressed in black with his face covered shooting indiscriminantly when he walked out between a convenience store and car wash across from Hammond Air Plaza.
Police closed the streets between the police department’s headquarters and Interstate 12.
Updated reports are that officials fear that three officers are dead after this morning’s violence. Kip Holden, the mayor-president of East Baton Rouge Parish, said authorities were still trying to get a handle on the situation, but added, “The count is three officers dead possibly.”
Holden also said that the shooter is believed, but not confirmed, to be down. Victims may include police officers and sheriff’s deputies.
“There is still an active scene. They are investigating,” he said. “Right now we are trying to get our arms around everything. Everything is moving fast and I have not been able to verify everything,” he said.
Authorities did not immediately say where the Sunday morning shooting occurred or release additional details.
Mayor Holden, at 11:24 a.m, confirmed that three officers had been shot, but said that their status is not confirmed. Further reports are that they officers were gravely injured and media are waiting on reports whether any have died.
According to the CBS affiliate in Baton Rouge at 11:28 a.m., it was confirmed that two police officers have died from the shooting that began just after 9 a.m. local time this morning. Officers have been transported to Our Lady of the Lake hospital. Armed police are guarding the hospital as of this writing.
CBS affiliate WAFB, Baton Rouge is reporting that four police officers were shot, two mortally.
This latest shooting, following the killing of five officers in Dallas, will impact the political dialogue in Cleveland, where a larger police presence is being brought in due to the multiple threats to those attending the convention, supporting the Trump/Pence Republican ticket. Trump has declared himself the “law and order” candidate and speaks out in support of the men and women in uniform, from southern border guards to local law enforcement.
Reports are that Cleveland is already filled with thousands of officers seeking to keep the peace in Cleveland. Attaching perspective to this most recent police target shooting, 33 officers were shot and killed in 2015 in the line of duty; this year that number has already reached 29.
As of 10:48 a.m. (CT) WABF, the local CBS affiliate, is reporting that seven officers have been shot. It is not clear whether that number includes the officers that have died.
As of 11 a.m. (CT) it is confirmed seven officers shot, three have died from their injuries. Reports are that the ambush took place when one individual, reported to be a young black male, called 911 stating that another person was pointing a gun at him.
When the police officer arrived, he was shot while his gun was still holstered. This has not been confirmed by multiple sources at this time.