Mississippi Highway Patrol Trooper Murdered In Off-Duty Killing
Tippah County, MS – An off-duty Mississippi state trooper was murdered, and a second man was injured, during an early-morning shooting on Sunday.
The Mississippi Highway Patrol (MHP) was dispatched to Hatchie Bottom near the border of Tippah County and Alcorn County at approximately 12:45 a.m., The Daily Corinthian reported.
It was unclear why the troopers were requested at the location.
They arrived to find two men suffering from gunshot wounds, MHP Public Affairs Division Sergeant Ray Hall told The Daily Corinthian.
Off-duty MHP Trooper Kenneth Joshlin “Josh” Smith, 32, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The second victim, 38-year-old Rickie Dale Vick, suffered non-life threatening injuries, and was taken to a local hospital.
Investigators initiated a manhunt for the shooter, identified as 43-year-old Troy Anthony Eaten, with the assistance of state, local, and federal law enforcement officers, WTVA reported.
Eaton ultimately surrendered at approximately 5:30 a.m., and was taken into custody.
The Department of Public Safety did not provide further details, KRIS reported.
It is unclear what charges Eaton may face, or whether he has an attorney.
Trooper Smith was a member of the MHP’s Troop F, and served Alcorn County, The Daily Corinthian reported.
Local law enforcement officers described him as “an outstanding person,” according to the news outlet.
The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation is handling the ongoing investigation into the shooting.