Bear, DE - Delaware State Police Corporal Stephen Ballard was murdered in the parking lot of a Wawa convenience store Wednesday.
Corporal Stephen Ballard was investigating a suspicious vehicle occupied by two people in the parking lot of the Wawa convenience store at 1605 Pulaski Highway.
Delaware State Police Colonel Nathaniel McQueen Jr. said that Corporal Ballard “made contact with the occupants and shortly thereafter, a struggle ensued. It was at this time that one of the two suspects exited the vehicle and proceeded to fire several rounds, striking the trooper.”
A witness described Corporal Ballard falling to the ground, and a suspect continued to repeatedly shoot him. The shooter then fled on foot. The witness described the hero face-down on the ground as nearby citizens rushed over to perform CPR. Corporal Ballard was transported to the hospital where be was pronounced dead.
One of the suspects was taken into custody shortly after the shooting, without further incident. Another suspect fled to his residence in the 500 block of St. Michaels Drive in the Brick Mill Farms Development, where police surrounded his house.
The suspect has been barricaded in his residence ever since and has repeatedly continued to fire shots at officers.
The Delaware State Police released the following statement:
At 8:22 p.m. Wednesday April 26, 2017, the Explosives Ordinance Disposal Unit (EOD) utilized an explosive breaching charge on the front door. At that time, no entry was made into the residence.
Around 4:00 a.m. this morning, Thursday April 27, 2017, officers once again came under fire from the suspect. Allied agencies explosively breached numerous windows but have not entered the residence.
Multiple Special Operations Response Teams and Conflict Management Teams from allied police agencies are attempting to make contact with the male subject and are continuing to attempt to persuade him to surrender.
Residents in the area remain evacuated.
Corporal Stephen Ballard was 32-years-old and an 8-year veteran, assigned to Troop 2, Glasgow. He was just married last year. A family member described him as a “husband a son a father and a loving loving person always smiling."
Our thoughts and prayers are with this murdered hero's family as officers continue to try to take his killer into custody.
Corporal Stephen Ballard, your life mattered.
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