A Texas police officer has been shot and killed while he was attempting to serve a warrant on a suspect. The suspect was also shot, according to reports.
A San Marcos, Texas, police officer attempted to serve a warrant on a suspect in the El Camino Real subdivision. The suspect allegedly opened fire on the officer shooting several times, according to KSAT ABC12. The officer was reported to be with other officers while serving the warrant.
Police Chief Chase Strapp told reporters the suspect fired on officers “much like an ambush situation,” KSAT reported. The suspect is reportedly wanted for a violent crime, police officials stated.
Police officials identified the deceased officer as San Marcos Police Officer Kenneth Copeland, KXAN News tweeted.
PICTURE: Fallen San Marcos Police Officer Kenneth Copeland. He was 58 years old. Leaves behind a wife and 4 kids. pic.twitter.com/TttA8TKlqm
— KXAN News (@KXAN_News) December 5, 2017
Despite wearing protective gear, the shots struck the officer. He was rushed to Central Texas Medical Center where he died from his wounds.
A statement from the San Marcos police department reports that the as yet unidentified suspect has also been shot. Police have not yet disclosed the condition of the suspect.
The suspect is said to be in an Austin-area hospital. It is not known at this time if the suspect’s wounds are self-inflicted or if other officers shot him while returning fire.
A Hays County SWAT team assisted the San Marcos Police Department during the standoff with the suspect, officials stated.
Katie Hall, an Austin American-Statesman reporter tweeted a message reporting that Officer Copeland was supposed to be off work today but was called in to serve the warrant.
This Officer Kenneth Copeland, 58, who police say was shot and killed while serving a warrant. Today was his day off, but he was called in. pic.twitter.com/U3Ymcdbxfr
— Katie Hall (@Katie_Statesman) December 5, 2017
The City of San Marcos shared the following message on its Facebook page:
Governor Greg Abbott responded to the death of the officer through the following statement:
Today we grieve for the family of the fallen San Marcos police officer, and we vow swift justice for the killer. The men and women in law enforcement put their lives on the line every day to protect and to serve our communities, and we will never forget their sacrifices. Cecilia and I extend our heartfelt condolences to the officer’s family and to the entire San Marcos Police Department.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton also released a statement:
Along with everyone learning of a San Marcos police officer’s murder today, I am deeply troubled and saddened. Officers around our state courageously serve and deserve our utmost honor and respect, especially during this time. Please join Angela and me as we pray for the officer’s family, the people of San Marcos, and for our law enforcement officers around the state.
Officer Copeland reportedly leaves behind a grieving widow and four children. He is also a former Coast Guard veteran, according to the San Marcos city manager who spoke at a press conference on Monday evening.
This is a developing story and will be updated with further information as it becomes available.
Officer Copeland is the first San Marcos police officer to be killed in the line of duty. He is the 119th law enforcement official to be killed in the line of duty this year, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.