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  • Posted by: Kevin Martinez

3 Suspects Arrested After Fatally Shooting 2 Mississippi Officers During Traffic Stop


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Police have charged a 22-year-old woman as the third suspect in the fatal shooting of two Hattiesburg, Mississippi, police officers, the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation said Sunday.

Joanie Calloway was charged with two counts of capital murder, the bureau said in a statement.

Officers Benjamin Deen, 34, and Liquori Tate, 24, were making a traffic stop Saturday evening when they were shot, Mayor Johnny DuPree said. They were taken to a hospital, but did not survive.

Marvin Banks, 29, and Curtis Banks, 26, were arrested earlier in Hattiesburg, police said. Marvin Banks faces two counts of capital murder, along with counts of grand theft auto and felon in possession of a firearm.

Police charged Curtis Banks with two counts of accessory after the fact of capital murder, according to a news release from the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, which is in charge of the investigation.

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The suspects were taken into custody at different locations, police said. After the shooting, which occurred just before 8 p.m., the suspects fled in a police vehicle before abandoning

it behind a train depot, officials told CNN affiliate WDAM.

Dean's and Tate's bodies have been taken to the state medical examiner's office for autopsies, while the suspects were taken "to undisclosed jails outside Forrest County to await their initial appearances" in the Forrest County Justice Court on Monday, state police said.

A memorial service is planned for the officers Monday afternoon, the Hattiesburg American reported.

The shooting marked the first time in 30 years that an officer was killed in the line of duty in Hattiesburg, the mayor told CNN.

"The men and women who go out every day to make sure that we are safe were turned on tonight," DuPree said.

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant said he and his wife, Deborah, were mourning the officers' deaths.

"This should remind us to thank all law enforcement for their unwavering service to protect and serve. May God keep them all in the hollow of his hand," he said in a statement.

Deen, who DuPree said was married with two children, was a K-9 officer who earned his department's officer of the year honors in 2012, according to The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi.

Tate was not married, DuPree said. The young officer wrote on Facebook that he graduated from the police academy in June 2014.

"I am now a Police Officer. I would like to thank God, the Police Academy, the Police Department, my family, friends, and love ones," he wrote.

Judging from his Facebook timeline, Tate was a fan of selfies, and he often posted photos of himself posing alone or with family members.

He apparently had just gotten a haircut this month, and after he posted a photo of himself, his father, Ronald Tate, replied, "Looks like you been brushing for hours! Nice though!" His son responded, "lol thanks."

In another Facebook exchange with his son in March, Ronald Tate wrote, "Hey sonnyboi! Call ya dad sometimes! I need a good laugh!" About an hour later, Liquori Tate replied, "Calling you now lol."

Reached by phone, Ronald Tate told CNN he was still in "disbelief" and needed time before speaking to the media. On Facebook, where his timeline had been filled with condolences, he wrote that he'd been in a "dizzy haze" since 10:11 p.m. Saturday.

"My heart has been ripped out of my chest, and torn into a million pieces," he said. "Gotta get down to MS where my daughter is. She's absolutely devastated. He was clearly her protector, and friend."

[CNN]

#joaniecalloway #marvinbanks #curtisbanks

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