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Tuscaloosa Police Officer Shot and Killed in the Line of Duty

By Victor Westerkamp

A 40-year-old Tuscaloosa, Alabama police officer, and Army veteran, was murdered yesterday while serving a warrant at the home where a fugitive was located.

“Heroes come in many different forms,” said Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox at a press conference. “Tonight, one of our heroes has died in the line of duty,” LAT reported.

At 6:23 p.m. investigator Dornell Cousette responded to a call regarding a fugitive wanted for failing to appear relating to felony charges. The property Cousette went to is located near the intersection of Short 17th Street and 33rd Avenue in western Tuscaloosa.

As soon as Cousette addressed the suspect, the man ran inside the home, grabbed a gun and opened fire, according to ODMP.org. Cousette was shot in the face but managed to fire back and wound the suspect.

Cousette was rushed to DCH Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. He is survived by his fiance and his two daughters.

The 20-year-old suspect whose identity has not been made public yet was later apprehended when he sought medical care for his shot wound at another hospital in Northport. He has a previous arrest history for charges of robbery and assault. No updates were given on his condition.

“He was a great officer. Everybody loved him,” Tuscaloosa Interim Police Chief Mitt Tubbs said about Cousette, according to AL.com. “You can tell by the number of people who arrived at the hospital when we got the news. He was well thought of throughout the department and he was a hero. He was a hero.”

Cousette served the Tuscaloosa Police force for 13 years and was the 4th Alabama officer to date that has died in the line of duty this year. Auburn police officer William Buechner, Sean Tuder of Mobile, and Birmingham officer Wytasha Carter were killed before Cousette.

Alabama Police Officer Killed, Another Wounded in Shooting

One Birmingham police officer was killed and another critically wounded in a shooting early on Jan. 14, 2019, as the officers questioned two people suspected of trying to break into cars in Alabama’s largest city, authorities said.

Two suspects are in custody, one of whom was shot and is receiving medical treatment, according to police.

Police identified the officer who was fatally shot as Sgt. Wytasha Carter, 44, a member of the department since 2011. The names of the wounded officer and the suspects were not immediately released.

Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith said the officers had approached the two suspects just before 2 a.m. outside a downtown Birmingham nightclub after a plainclothes officer spotted one of them checking door handles on cars parked outside the venue. Smith said one suspect opened fire after being confronted by the officers.

Smith added: “It appears our officers were unable to respond. They were taken completely by surprise. We can’t go into great detail because we are still in the infancy stage of the investigation.”

Carter began his law enforcement career in 2002 as a correctional officer with the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office and worked for two other police departments before transferring to the Birmingham department. He was promoted to sergeant in February 2018.

Associated Press contributed to this article