ST. LOUIS (NewsNation) — One of the two St. Louis police officers who were shot Saturday evening while responding to a report of a shooting suspect barricaded inside a home has died, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department announced Sunday evening.
The suspect was taken into custody and the area was considered safe Sunday morning, police confirmed on Twitter.
Officer Tamarris L. Bohannon, 29, was shot in the head and taken to St. Louis University Hospital, where he passed away. He had been with the department for more than three years.
The other officer suffered a leg wound, according to police.
Investigators with the police department said the incident took place shortly before 6 p.m. CT in the South Grand neighborhood near Tower Grove Park.
A man entered the home of a family before ordering them out of their residence at gunpoint and barricading himself inside, Police Chief John Hayden Jr. said.
The officers were searching for a victim in response to a report of a shooting when the gunman fired shots and struck one of the officers in the head, Hayden said. After other officers went to check on the wounded officer, the suspect then shot a second officer in the leg, he said.
The officers were “trying to do their job, that’s all they’re trying to do and they’re suffering under gunfire,” Hayden said, adding that the incidents are part of “a surge in violence” this summer. He asked residents to pray for the officers.
“We’re trying to cope through a very trying summer, and it’s very difficult. It’s very difficult,” he said.
Since June 1, Hayden noted that a total of eight officers have been shot in the line of duty.
Several streets were closed to vehicles and pedestrians. Nearby residents were warned to shelter inside as SWAT officers swarmed the neighborhood. Police surrounded the residence where the suspect was blocked in with SUVs and officers were armed with rifles.
Police officers used a bullhorn to order the suspect to leave the house. At one point, police said they were firing tear gas into the house. It was unclear Sunday morning how long the suspect had been barricaded.
St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson tweeted her condolences following the incident.
“Please keep our injured officers and all the men and women of (the St. Louis Police Department) in your thoughts and prayers as this situation continues to develop. Their friends, family and loved ones, too,” Krewson said.
“This is a horrific reminder of the dangers our brave men and women willingly face every day to keep us safe,” Krewson said in a statement, calling Bohannon’s death “a terrible, senseless tragedy.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.