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Two officers shot in Lawrence County during traffic stop, suspect dead

Two Lawrence Officers Shot.PNG
Posted at 9:21 AM, Feb 05, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-08 09:12:32-05

LAWRENCE COUNTY — Two police officers are in serious condition after they were shot during an attempted traffic stop early Sunday morning in Mitchell.

Indiana State Police say the shooting happened around 3:15 a.m. a Lawrence County Sheriff's deputy pulled over a vehicle in the area of 4800 SR 37 in Mitchell.

While the deputy was conducting the stop, a second deputy and his K9 partner, along with a Mitchell Police Officer both arrived on the scene to assist during the stop. The incident evolved into a drug investigation after the K9 gave a positive indication during an "open-air sniff", according to ISP.

Photo of vehicle pulled over during traffic stop in Lawrence County that led to two officers being shot.

Officers located narcotics inside the vehicle and while they were attempting to put the man in handcuffs he fled from the scene on foot and ran across SR 37 into a grassy area. When officers caught up with the suspect he began to physically resist, drew a handgun and began firing at officers at point-blank range, according to ISP.

Two officers were struck by gunfire and at least one officer was able to return fire, striking the suspect. Additional officers arrived on the scene and began providing medical aid to both of the officers and the suspect before they were transported for emergency treatment.

The two officers were airlifted to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis and were "alert and conscious". Their injuries are believed to be non-life-threatening.

The officers were identified as Lawrence County Sherrif's Deputy Joshua Rhoades, a five-year veteran of the department and Mitchell Police Officer Christian Anderson, a three-year veteran of the police department.

Rhoades was later released from the hospital Sunday night. Anderson, as explained by the Lawrence County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday, was also released from the hospital.

The suspect was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. The suspect was identified as 29-year-old Anthony Richmond of West Baden Springs, Indiana

Indiana State Police say the officers involved were wearing body cameras at the time of the incident and the footage will be reviewed by detectives as part of the investigation.

Additional details about the shooting remain under investigation. No other information is being released at this time.

“This tragic incident underscores the dangers that law enforcement officers face each day, even in our beloved Lawrence County," Lawrence County Sheriff Greg Day said.
"I am extremely proud of the actions and response by officers from my office as well as our law enforcement and first responder partners. I am very thankful Deputy Rhoades and Officer Anderson will make full recoveries, and I am mindful that a family is mourning the loss of a loved one. The lives of many people were affected by a senseless criminal act. Thank you to our brave officers for their dedication and courage.”