Police have released the name of the Shreveport, Louisiana, officer who was fatally shot as she was heading to work ahead of the start of her shift Wednesday night.
Chateri Payne was shot multiple times while in her uniform and died within hours of being transported to a local hospital, Shreveport police chief Ben Raymond announced this morning.
"Every life is precious and the taking of any human life is unacceptable, but when a servant who has taken an oath and committed their life to protecting others is violently taken from us, we all collectively feel the pain of that loss," Raymond said at a news conference Thursday morning.
Payne had just completed her cadet training in mid-November, meaning she had been working as an officer for less than two months at the time of her death. She was hired by the department on July 27, 2018, and graduated from her training program on Nov. 16, Raymond said.
"I handed her diploma to her and shook her hand as she proudly walked across the stage and joined our ranks. I saw firsthand the excitement in her eyes as she embarked upon her chosen career of serving others," Raymond said.
The investigation into the shooting is underway, and Raymond said the department is actively searching for "the coward or cowards responsible for the brutal murder of Officer Payne."
When asked if Payne was able to discharge her weapon in self-defense, Raymond said, "Not that I'm aware of."
"We have many more questions than answers," Raymond said.
The Shreveport Police Officer's Association bemoaned her death in a statement released overnight.
"We have lost one of our own. She was young, and she was beautiful. She was proving herself to be a capable professional, dedicated to serving the Citizens of Shreveport. We lift her family in prayer, and we thank you for allowing her to be a part of us," the association said in a statement.
Shreveport Police Captain Marcus Hines said more than 50 police units responded to the shooting, which happened around 8:30 p.m., ABC affiliate KTBS reported.
He said the officer was a new addition to the department and was in uniform at the time of the shooting. She was not yet on duty.
At least one person was detained for questioning, but there hadn't been any arrests as of early Thursday, according to KTBS.
The case in Shreveport wasn’t the only instance of an American police officer being shot on Wednesday night.
In North Carolina, a Raleigh Police Department officer -- whose identity has not been released -- was shot while trying to apprehend a suspect, according to police.
The male officer is now out of surgery after suffering multiple gunshot wounds, according to a statement from Raleigh police chief Cassandra Deck-Brown.
Police announced that Cedric Jamal Kearney, 24, has been charged with attempted murder, assault on a law enforcement officer with a firearm, robbery with a dangerous weapon and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. Antonio Dequan Fletcher, 21, was also arrested and faces a charge of possession of a stolen firearm.
"We ask that everyone continue to pray for the officer and his family," Deck-Brown said in a statement.