Police arrested and charged one man and one woman with capital murder after two Mississippi police officers were shot to death during a traffic stop on Saturday night. The deaths mark the first time police officers are killed while on duty in the city of Hattiesburg in three decades. “Thirty years ago was the last time that this has happened in Hattiesburg, and we’ve had a lot to happen over the past 15 years with tornadoes and storms,” Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree said, according to the Jackson Clarion-Ledger. “But you never want this to happen.”
Although authorities are refusing to discuss the motives behind the killings of 34-year-old Benjamin Deen and 25-year-old Liquori Tate, CNN affiliate WDAM reports the suspects stole a police vehicle after the shooting. Marvin Banks, 29, and 22-year-old Joani Calloway were both charged with two counts of capital murder. Banks’ brother, 26-year-old Curtis Banks, was charged with two counts of accessory after the fact of capital murder.
Deen, a K-9 officer was named Officer of the Year in 2012 while Tate was a relative newcomer to law enforcement. He posted on his Facebook page on June 11 to celebrate that he had graduated from the Police Academy.
The killings took place a day after tens of thousands gathered to honor a New York police officer, Brian Moore, who was shot and killed while on duty.