Three cops were shot dead in Baton Rouge and three wounded Sunday morning by a trio of suspects, two of whom were still at large, police said.
One suspect was shot and killed by cops, police said, who urged locals to be on the lookout for suspicious people wearing Army fatigues, all black, or masks, Baton Rouge police said.
Law enforcement from both the Baton Rouge Police Department and East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s deputies were injured in the attack, which occurred just before 9 a.m. local time, near a shopping center, Hammond Aire Plaza.
The shopping center is only a mile from police headquarters, and about five miles away from the Triple S Food Mart, where Baton Rouge cops shot and killed Alton Sterling , a black man, on July 5.
Police had responded to a call of a suspicious person with an assault-style rifle walking near the shopping center before the shooting, CNN reported. No protest was taking place in the area at the time.
Reporters near the scene, which was flooded with police, did not hear any exchanges of gunfire. The East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office said the scene was still active.
“This is an unspeakable and unjustified attack on all of us at a time when we need unity and healing. Rest assured, every resource available to the State of Louisiana will be used to ensure the perpetrators are swiftly brought to justice,” Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said in a statement.
The attack appears to be the latest example of escalated tensions in the wake of police killings of black men, as well as a retaliatory ambush on cops in Dallas.
The day after Sterling was shot by cops while he was pinned down, a Minnesota woman livestreamed the final breaths of Philando Castile, a black man, after he was shot by a police officer.
Then on July 7, an unhinged Army reservist shot and killed five Dallas police officers overseeing a protest of police killings. The gunman, Micah Johnson, told authorities he was out to kill white cops.
Earlier this week, Baton Rouge officers foiled four would-be gunmen’s plan to kill cops after nine guns were swiped from a pawn shop.
Cops around Baton Rouge have been warning of a “substantial, credible threat” to police since the Dallas attack amid frequent protests against police.