Suspect in Cop's Murder Was 'Looking to Kill an Officer'

Ohio dispatchers got frantic call from woman who said ex was on hunt, cop later killed
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 18, 2016 12:19 PM CST
Suspect in Cop's Murder Was 'Looking to Kill an Officer'
Suspect Herschel Jones has been in trouble before.   (Knox County Sheriff's Office, via NBC News)

An Ohio man with a long rap sheet was taken into custody early Monday after a Danville cop was found shot dead and his police cruiser and gun missing, NBC News reports. Officer Thomas Cottrell was on duty late Sunday when a disturbing call came into the Knox County dispatch center around 11:20pm, per WCMH: A woman told dispatchers her ex had left with weapons and was looking to kill a police officer. After trying to contact Cottrell by radio, sheriff's officers went out in search of him, first finding Cottrell's bloody hat, per WBNS—and then his body, just before midnight behind a municipal building. Cottrell, one of six officers in the tiny Danville PD, had been shot to death, and his body was found without his gun or cruiser. The cruiser was later found a half-mile away, reports Fox News.

Herschel Jones was seen sprinting from a residence about an hour and a half later and was briefly pursued by cops on foot and taken into custody. Per CBS News, Jones has been named the prime suspect in the killing, but it's unclear whether Jones—charged previously for breaking and entering, burglary, and carrying a concealed weapon, among other infractions—has been charged, NBC notes. He was jailed for four years after a 2011 conviction for receiving stolen property and illegal possession of chemicals. Meanwhile, Danville mourns one of its men in blue. "[Our] members … are heartbroken this morning as we learn about the tragic murder of Officer Thomas Cottrell," reads a Monday morning post on the Fraternal Order of Police of Ohio's Facebook page. "His assassination is the latest reminder of how dangerous police work is and how the police are targeted for violence." (This case sounds nothing like a recent police shooting in Illinois.)

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