Ohio officer shot, killed during SWAT standoff
Officer Brandon Stalker was shot during a standoff with an arson suspect
Duty Death: Brandon Stalker - [Toledo, Ohio]
End of Service: 01/18/2021
By Cliff Pinckard
TOLEDO, Ohio — A police officer was shot and killed Monday during a standoff with an arson suspect, according to reports.
Brandon Stalker, 24, was taken to a hospital after being shot once but died of his wounds, WTOL Channel 11 reports. The unidentified suspect also was wounded and taken to a hospital.
“This is a very dark and hurtful day for the city of Toledo,” Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz said, according to WTVG Channel 13. “The events that took place today challenge all of us in how best we should respond to the sadness that we feel in our hearts. For those who react with feelings of hatred and a desire to take our community into a darker place, I might simply say that Dr. King said ‘Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that.’”
Police tell WTOL that the gunman was a suspect in a fire that occurred Monday morning at Rosary Cathedral in Toledo. WTVG reports officers spotted the suspect Monday afternoon standing beside a street in the city and that when they approached, he brandished a firearm and went inside a residence.
A SWAT unit was called in and negotiations with the suspect lasted about two hours, reports say. The negotiations were unsuccessful, so police fired tear gas into the home.
The suspect then reportedly came out of the house with two firearms and began firing. Stalker and the suspect both were wounded, WTOL reports.
Stalker was engaged to be married and had a young child, reports say. He is the second Toledo police officer to be killed in less than a year.
“Fran and I are deeply saddened to learn of the death of Toledo Police Officer Brandon Stalker,” Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said in a tweet. “Our hearts go out to his family, friends, Chief , and the everyone at the Toledo Police Department.”
DeWine has ordered that all U.S. and Ohio flags in Lucas County be flown at half-staff in honor of Stalker.
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