A man with a rifle opened fire on police serving a warrant in eastern Kentucky, killing three officers and wounding five others.
After an hours-long standoff in Allen, a small town in Appalachia, police said they had taken 49-year-old Lance Storz into custody late on Thursday night.
On top of that, a police dog was killed and an emergency management official was injured, according to the arrest citation.
On Friday, Floyd county’s sheriff, John Hunt, told reporters that the responding officers came upon “pure hell” on the scene.
“They had no chance,” he said.
When deputies were shot at, they called for backup. Four deputies responded initially. After negotiations in which his family members were involved, a suspect surrendered. Deputies served a court-issued warrant regarding domestic violence on Thursday evening, according to Hunt.
William Petry, one of Hunt’s deputies, and Prestonsburg police captain Ralph Frasure were killed in the shooting.
Frasure worked for the Floyd County Sheriff’s Department for 39 years. years. Prestonsburg police said in a social media post Friday night that another officer, Jacob Chaffins, died after being hospitalized.
The Pike county judge arraigned Torz on Friday morning. He was incarcerated on a $10m bond for two counts of murder of a police officer. At the hearing, a judge said one of the charges had been upgraded to murder from attempted murder of a police officer. A second attempted murder charge and assault on a service animal are also pending against him.
There were few details available on Friday. State police have said they are investigating an officer-involved shooting in a brief statement.
“This is a tough morning for our commonwealth,” the governor, Andy Beshear, said in a social media post on Friday morning. “Floyd county and our brave first responders suffered a tragic loss last night. I want to ask all of Kentucky to join me in praying for this community.”
The Kentucky attorney general, Daniel Cameron, posted on social media that he was heartbroken over news of the officers’ deaths.
“Our law enforcement exhibited unimaginable heroism and sacrifice last night in the face of evil,” he said.