BREAKING NEWS – Authorities in Iowa have called for a manhunt after two police officers were killed in separate ambush attacks early Wednesday morning while sitting in their patrol cars.
The shootings occured 20 mintues apart near Des Moines. One Des Moines police officer and another from the suburb of Urbandale were found in their bullet-riddled cruisers, Des Moines police Sgt. Paul Parizek said.
“There’s somebody out there shooting police. There is a clear and present danger to police officers right now,” he said.
The scene of the first shooting at 70th and Aurora where an officer was found shot early Wed morning. Some officers in combat gear here. pic.twitter.com/SJEUY4B3gh
— Brian Powers (@bpowersphoto) November 2, 2016
Police are working to determine if there is one gunman. One person who was identified as a witness described a pickup truck with a topper.
“In all appearances it looks just like that, that these officers were ambushed,” Parizek said. “It doesn’t look like there was any interaction between these cowards and the officers they shot in their cars.”
Urbandale Sgt. Chad Underwood said his officers are equipped with body cameras, but they are not always on. Schools in Urbandale were closed Wednesday, Fox 25 reported.
— Terry Branstad (@TerryBranstad) November 2, 2016
Neither police officer was identified by officials and– as of a 5 a.m.– police were still notifying family members. Parizek said their names and details about their service would be released later Wednesday.
The shootings appear to be the latest cases of police officers being targeted for assassination in a year that has seen 111 police officers killed in the line of duty, including 50 by gunfire, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
The shootings follow a spate of police killings, including ambushes of officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Five officers were killed in Dallas on July 7 and three were killed later that month in Baton Rouge
Des Moines police said in a news release earlier that officers responded to a report of shots fired at the intersection of 70th Street and Aurora Avenue at 1:06 a.m., and the first officers to arrive on scene found an Urbandale officer dying of gunshot wounds.
Des Moines police officers responded to assist and just 20 minutes later, a Des Moines officer was found fatally shot at an intersection about two blocks away.
The Des Moines Register reported that streets at both shooting scenes were closed amid the investigation. Schools in the area were also closing for Wednesday, officials said.
The Des Moines police officer is believed to be the first from the city to be shot and killed on duty since two officers were gunned down in separate incidents in 1977, according to the Register.
Two Des Moines police officers were killed earlier this year when their car was struck head-on by a wrong-way drunken driver, according to the paper.
The Urbandale police officer is believed to be that department’s first to be shot dead in the line of duty, Underwood said at the news conference.
Source: FOX NEWS