A police officer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin was killed on Feb. 7 while attempting to apprehend a robbery suspect with prior criminal charges, who was out on probation.
Milwaukee Police Officer Peter Jerving, 37, responded to a call about an armed robbery at around 11:25 p.m. on Feb. 6.
Milwaukee Police Chief Jeffrey Norman, speaking at a Feb. 7 press conference, said officers found the robbery suspect at around 1:16 a.m. They identified the suspect as 19-year-old Terrell Thompson.
Thompson initially escaped police, but Jerving caught up to him and a struggle ensued. During that struggle, Thompson pulled out a handgun and fired shots, striking the police officer. Though injured, Jerving returned fire against Thompson.
Thompson suffered a fatal gunshot wound and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Jerving was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Norman said investigators are working to determine whether Jerving fired the shots that killed Thompson, or whether Thompson’s fatal wound was self-inflicted after being cornered by police.
According to court transcript obtained by FOX 6, Thompson had received probation about 14 hours before he killed Jerving. About two years prior, Thompson had ran a red light and then fled the scene of the crash that resulted. About a year and a half ago, Thompson had hit two more cars in a single night and again fled the scene.
Thompson was facing 120 days in a correctional facility but the judge in his case — Judge Christopher Dee — instead gave Thompson 12 months of probation after the 19-year-old plead guilty. Dee called the sentencing decision a good bargain for Thompson.
“Milwaukee, our hearts are heavy,” Norman said, holding back tears during the Feb. 7 press conference. “Milwaukee Police Department hearts are heavy. My heart is heavy. One of our finest, who put on that uniform, put on that badge, went into work last night and paid the ultimate sacrifice for protecting our community. Milwaukee, we need your prayers. We need your support.”