One police officer has died and two others are in hospital after they were shot at a home in a village east of Ottawa, Ontario Provincial Police said Thursday.
OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique identified the officer who died as Sgt. Eric Mueller.
“It is with an extremely heavy heart that I regretfully advise that OPP Sgt. Eric Mueller has been killed in the line of duty,” Carrique wrote in a statement posted to social media.
“We anxiously await for further word on his fellow officers who are still at hospital.”
The three officers responded shortly after 2 a.m. to a disturbance at a home in Bourget, Ont., where someone reported hearing a gunshot, OPP said.
When they arrived, the officers were shot by someone at the home, police said. All three officers were sent to an Ottawa hospital. One person is in custody and there is no risk to public safety, OPP said.
Jaclyn Young said the sounds of sirens had pierced the typical early morning quiet of her small community of Bourget, located about 50 kilometres east of Ottawa.
The shooting, which she said took place a few blocks from her home, has placed her family on edge. Her seven-year-old son, who was at his grandfather’s house last night even closer to the scene, was scared to go to school Thursday, she said.
“It’s nerve-racking to know that this happened. An officer lost his life in our town due to protecting our community,” she said.
“You would never in a million years think something like this would happen.”
Ontario Premier Doug Ford extended his thoughts to the family of Mueller, who he said was “senselessly killed in the line of duty.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also sent his condolences to Mueller’s loved ones, saying the news coming out of Bourget was “awful.”
OPP union leaders from across the province were gathered in Collingwood, Ont., on Thursday for an unrelated meeting when they got word of the shooting, said OPP Association spokesman Scott Mills.
“This is devastating,” Mills said in a phone interview. “There’s a lot of heavy hearts here. When is this going to stop?”
Last weekend, the names of four officers killed while on duty last year were added to the Ontario Police Memorial as part of an annual remembrance ceremony.
Toronto police Const. Andrew Hong was shot in what police described as an ambush on Sept. 12 at a Mississauga, Ont., Tim Hortons.
A month later, South Simcoe Police constables Devon Northrup and Morgan Russell were killed after they responded to a disturbance call in Innisfil, Ont.
Then on Dec. 27, OPP say Const. Greg Pierzchala was fatally shot in an ambush while responding to call for a vehicle in a ditch.