Memphis police officer killed during traffic stop; one person in custody
MEMPHIS, Tennesee — Memphis police took one person into custody Sunday in connection with the shooting death of a police officer the night before, CNN affiliates WMC and WREG reported.
The Memphis Police Department has not confirmed any arrests or other developments in the case, and did not immediately return CNN’s calls for comment.
Officer Sean Bolton, 33, was shot multiple times during a traffic stop Saturday night by a person who was in the car he pulled over, police said.
Bolton’s killer fled, sparking an overnight manhunt, according to Memphis police spokeswoman Karen Rudolph.
A civilian used the officer’s radio to notify police about the shooting, she said.
Bolton, who joined the force in October 2010, was taken to hospital in critical condition. He later died.
This is the third time a Memphis police officer has been killed in the past four years, Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong said.
“It doesn’t get any easier. This is a very difficult time, not only for me as director, but for all the officers you see standing behind me,” he told reporters early Sunday morning.
“And (it’s) a difficult time for our city as well. So I ask that you give us the respect that we need … and the space that we need to grieve, and the time that we need to prepare to lay our brother to rest.”
The shooting follows a series of incidents across the country in which police have been accused of using excessive force during traffic stops.
Former University of Cincinnati Police Officer Ray Tensing faces charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter for shooting Samuel DuBose in the head during a traffic stop July 19. DuBose’s death reignited a familiar chant across the country: “Black lives matter.”
It’s unclear what led to Bolton’s shooting in Memphis, but the police chief said it highlights the risks police officers face every day.
“We say so often … do black lives matter? And at the end of the day, we have to ask ourselves, do all lives matter — regardless of race, creed, color, economic status, what profession that person holds? All lives matter,” Armstrong said.
“This is just a reminder of how dangerous this job is.”