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Baton Rouge, La. — Three more police officers have been killed and three injured in a report of shots fired that turned into an ambush here Sunday morning, July 17.
Killed were a 45-year-old East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s deputy, a 44-year-old Baton Rouge Police officer and a 32-year-old Baton Rouge Police officer.
One 41-year-old deputy was in critical condition after surgery. A 41-year-old police officer and a 51-year-old deputy were hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.
Update: Those killed were identified as Cpl. Montrell Jackson, 32, a black man and 10 year veteran of the Baton Rouge Police force; Matthew Gerald, 41, a former Marine deployed three times to Iraq who had been with the Baton Rouge Police for less than a year; and Deputy Brad Garafola, 45, who had been with the sheriff’s department for 24 years.
Injured were Deputy Nicholas Tullier, 41, in critical condition; Deputy Bruce Simmons, 51; and an unidentified Baton Rouge policeman.
Gov. John Edwards visited the officers at the hospital.
Baton Rouge is Louisiana’s capital. Of the city’s 230,000 residents, 55 percent are black. In 1980, 10 percent of city employees were black; now 201 of 657, or 30 percent, of the city’s police force is black.
The shooter was dressed all in black and was carrying a “long gun.” He was shpt dead at the scene.
According to reports the Sheriff’s office received a call of shots fired in the shopping area on Airline Road near Old Hammond Highway at around 8:42 a.m. When police responded, it turned into an ambush.
The shooting occurred at the B Quik convenience store/gas station, less than a mile from police headquarters.
Long has been identified as an former U.S. Marine sergeant who spent time in Iraq and was discharged in 2010. He received several medals including the Good Conduct medal and was a communications data specialist.
He has been identified as a 2005 graduate of Grandview, Mo., High School and a former University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, student. He was reported to have married in 2009 and divorced in 2011 and had no children.
Update: Long was reported as having been associated with right wing militia groups such as the New Freedom Group and Sovereign Citizens; he was a former member of the Nation of Islam. He was in no way associated with “Black Lives Matter.”
At least two unnamed suspected accomplices were held by police. However, police identified Long as the “lone gunman.”
Tensions have been running high here since the July 5 police shooting of Alton Sterling 37, in Baton Rouge. Sterling and a Minnesota man who was shot by police in a traffic stop stirred the protest rally in Dallas where five police officers were killed last week.
To read President Obama’s statement on the Baton Rouge shootings, click HERE. To read Vice President Biden’s statement, click HERE.
— H.E. and C.L.