FBI help­ing gather data in of­fi­cers’ am­bush

Houston Chronicle Sunday - - NATION | WORLD -

A spe­cial FBI team that in­ves­ti­gated the slay­ings five po­lice of­fi­cers in Dal­las in 2016 and the deadly mass shoot­ing in Las Ve­gas last year is help­ing lo­cal au­thor­i­ties gather ev­i­dence in what's de­scribed as an am­bush at­tack that killed one South Carolina law en­force­ment of­fi­cer and wounded six oth­ers.

“This is a large crime scene. This is a very large, com­plex puz­zle that we are still fill­ing the pieces in,” Rich­land County Sher­iff Leon Lott told news re­porters Fri­day. His deputies, based in the state cap­i­tal of Columbia, are in­ves­ti­gat­ing the case at the re­quest of the sher­iff in Florence County, about 90 miles to the east, where the slay­ings took place Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon.

The sus­pect, 74-year-old Fred­er­ick Hop­kins, was charged with mur­der and six counts of at­tempted mur­der Fri­day.

The dec­o­rated Viet­nam War vet­eran had set an am­bush for in­ves­ti­ga­tors com­ing to ques­tion his adult son about a child sex­ual as­sault, Lott said.

Hop­kins was hos­pi­tal­ized af­ter he was taken into cus­tody Wed­nes­day, but was taken to jail Fri­day, Lott said.

Two of the wounded of­fi­cers have been re­leased from the hos­pi­tal. Lott said oth­ers re­main in crit­i­cal con­di­tion but did not pro­vide de­tails.

Car­raway's fu­neral is sched­uled Mon­day at the city's civic cen­ter.

Ja­son Lee / Sun News via As­so­ci­ated Press

Po­lice of­fi­cers mourn at a memo­rial in Florence, S.C., af­ter a can­dle­light vigil for Sgt. Ter­rence Car­raway, who was killed in an am­bush.

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