Authorities say a Missouri police officer who was still in training after graduating from police academy in July has died after being shot by a wanted man who opened fire on officers and was also killed.
Independence, mo. A Missouri police officer who was still in training after graduating from police academy in July has died after being shot by a wanted man who opened fire on officers and was also killed, authorities said.
Independence officer Blaize Madrid-Evans, 22, was hospitalized with critical injuries after the shooting Wednesday morning and died later, independence police said late Wednesday.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol said two officers went to a residence in Independence around 6 p.m. 11:30 in response to a call for dispatch and was met by a man who fired a gun at officers.
Madrid-Evans was shot and the other officer returned, police said. The man who shot at the officers, who was later identified by the highway patrol as Cody L. Harrison, 33, of Gladstone, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The highway patrol investigated. Patrol Sgt. Andrew Bell said Wednesday that officers had received a tip that someone was wanted when they responded.
Missouri Department of Corrections records show Harrison as wanted and “out of custody,” but did not say why he was wanted. Judicial records show that he was sentenced to 15 years in prison after pleading guilty in 2011 to a number of discharges or firing a firearm on or from a motor vehicle at a person or into a motor vehicle or inhabited structure. No other details about the shooting were immediately available.
A spokeswoman for corrections did not immediately return a phone message early Thursday. And Patrol Sgt. Bill Lowe said early Thursday that the investigation was underway and he had no other information to release.
Madrid-Evans began his career with the department at the Kansas City Regional Police Academy in January and graduated in July. He had entered the department’s Field Training Officer program, the department said.
Officer Jack Taylor, a police spokesman, said Madrid-Evans was engaged.
“It’s pretty gloomy right now, just a kind of shock,” Taylor said Thursday. “Just trying to process what happened yesterday and figure out what the next steps are.”
He said the last time the department lost an officer in the service was in 2001, when Terry Foster was killed at the scene of a home disturbance. Foster, who was only weeks away from retirement, was shot four times by a man who police believe died in a subsequent fire that he started.
In a statement, Independence Mayor Eileen Weir thanked officers and other first aiders for their service.
“We ever hope that their daily interaction with the public will be peaceful so that they can safely return home to their families at the end of their shifts. That was not the case today, “the statement said.