Two more police officers were ambushed and murdered, this time while sitting in their squad cars in the Des Moines area early this morning.
“We’re just a few hours into this,” spokesman Sgt. Paul Parizek, Des Moines Police Department stated at a news conference. “It doesn’t look like there was any interaction between these officers and whoever the coward is who shot them while they sat in their cars.”
“We’re developing some suspect information right now,” He continued. “There’s nothing that we can share. As soon as we’ve got something that we can put out, it’s coming out.”
Shortly after 1 a.m., police in Urbandale (a suburb of Des Moines) responded to reports of gunfire. Upon arrival near the intersection of 70th Street and Aurora Avenue, they found a colleague who had been shot.
Officers responded from surrounding areas, aiding in the search for clues to the perpetrator when another officer was found shot at the intersection of Merle Hay Road and Sheridan Avenue in Des Moines. About a five minute drive from the first shooting.
“The shootings appear to have been ambush-style attacks.” Urbandale police department stated.
Ambush-style killings have escalated within the last several months, with an overall increase of officers related killings within the last year.
July 7th saw five police officers ambushed in Dallas by Micah Johnson, and ten days later, three more officers killed in Baton Rouge, La., by Gavin Long.
When asked about the dangers that LEOs face in current times, Sergeant Parizek replied angrily; “These guys were gunned down, sitting in their car doing nothing wrong. There is a clear and present danger to police officers right now. There’s definitely danger out there right now.”
Alluding to tensions between the civilian/law enforcement communities, Parizek continued. ” We’re very well aware of the society that we’re living in right now and the time. And that there are some not so positive views of law enforcement that a segment of our population holds.”
“If we don’t provide the service in the area that we do, with the personal-type service that we do, we’re nothing more than an occupying army. We’re going to do what we can to keep ourselves safe. Although added that police will continue to “answer the call”.
He also stated that officers in the Des Moines area will be conducting their patrols in pairs, to provide better protection to themselves.
These killings are the first “in the line of duty” shootings in this city since 1977.