PUERTO RICO — Three police officers were killed by a fellow officer at police headquarters in the city of Ponce, Puerto Rico, investigators said Monday.
A suspect is in custody, police said.
“There are no words to describe this tragedy where three colleagues have lost their lives. Our condolences for the families,” Puerto Rico Police Deputy Superintendent Col. Juan Rodriguez Davila said on the Twitter page of Puerto Rico’s police force.
The officer in custody is accused of killing a police commander, a lieutenant and an officer. His name was not immediately released.
Before Monday’s shootings, 123 law enforcement officers had been killed in the line of duty in the United States in 2015, compared with 133 in 2014, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page, a nonprofit organization “dedicated to honoring America’s fallen law-enforcement heroes.”
Excluding accidental shootings, 36 police officers in the United States had been killed by gunfire this year before the killings in Puerto Rico, compared with 47 last year, the organization said.
One police officer in Puerto Rico had been killed in the line of duty this year before the incident in Ponce; five died in the line of duty in 2014, the organization said.