The community of Florence, South Carolina is in mourning following a mass shooting that left six law enforcement officers wounded and one dead.
On Wednesday, Florence County Sheriff’s deputies were serving a warrant when a man allegedly opened fire on the deputies, wounding three, according to the Associated Press.
The man, who has yet to be identified, then allegedly took two children hostage, police said during Wednesday night’s press conference.
As the city police force rushed to back up the sheriff’s office, they came under intense fire and four more officers were injured, one fatally.
An armored vehicle had to be brought in to rescue the injured. Tragically, there was nothing that could be done for one of the officers, who was pronounced dead on arrival to the hospital and later identified by a city official as Terrence Carraway, 52.
Carraway had just celebrated 30 years as a police officer in the city, the AP reports.
“I want you to pray for the family who lost the bravest police officer I have ever known,” Florence Police Chief Allen Heidler said of his fallen officer during the press conference, struggling to hold back tears.
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According to Carraway’s Facebook, he was an Oakland Raiders fan and a lover of motorcycles.
The surviving officers were taken to the McLeod Regional Medical Center and their conditions are unknown at this time.
“These officers went there unknowing the firepower this suspect had. … They thought it was a random search warrant,” Florence County Sheriff Kenney Boone said during the press conference.
“Fire was being shot all over. The way the suspect was positioned, his view of fire was several hundred yards. So, he had an advantage,” Boone added.
The shooting, which occurred around 4:00 p.m. lasted for about two hours, according to WPDE-TV.
It is unclear at this time as to why the suspect was served a warrant, however, he is now in police custody. The children were not physically harmed.
In wake of Carraway’s death, The Copperhead LE/MC Pee Dee Chapter, a nonprofit organization, who strives to support “our brothers in law enforcement and military,” plans to honor Carraway with a ride.
“If you have a bike join our Chapter and many other clubs riding in Sgt. Terrance Carraway’s procession to honor his life and sacrifice,” the organization wrote on Facebook.
“The city of Florence… mourns tonight the loss of one of our own, and we pray for those who are wounded and still in jeopardy,” Florence Mayor Stephe Wukela said at the press conference.
“We can be reassured somewhat in the knowledge that the officer that passed and those who were wounded were doing what they love— which is protecting this community and protecting one another,” Wukela added.