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Two Mississippi Police Officers Killed In Motel Shootout With Local Veterinarian
Mississippi veterinarian Amy Anderson allegedly opened fire on Bay St. Louis Police Sgt. Steven Robin and Ofc. Branden Estorffe after they attempted to call child protective services on her. She also died in the encounter.
Two police officers were killed after a veterinarian opened fire on them in a motel parking lot earlier this week. She was also killed in the encounter.
Authorities were dispatched to a Motel 6 in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi — about 30 minutes west of Biloxi — at roughly 4:00 a.m. on Wednesday for a welfare check. A woman identified as Amy Anderson, 43, had dialed motel reception and requested police assistance because she reportedly believed she was being stalked by someone in a white pickup truck, according to WWL-TV.
Bay St. Louis Police Department Sergeant Steven Robin, 34, and Officer Branden Estorffe, 23, responded to the scene where they verbally engaged with Anderson for approximately 30 minutes, according to police. Initially, their exchange was described by Public Safety Commissioner Sean Tindell as a "pleasant conversation."
However, the two officers soon became concerned for the safety of Anderson’s 10-year-old daughter, who was found to be in the motel room with her and her three dogs and decided to call Child Protection Services.
“It is my opinion that Officer Estorffe and Sergeant Robin’s concerns for the safety of the minor child were well-founded," Tindell added, "And based upon the mental state of Mrs. Anderson, their heroic actions very well may have saved the lives of others.”
Tindell refused to say what Anderson did to provoke the officers' concerns.
Anderson allegedly attempted to flee the motel after officers made the call, and the two police ultimately prevented her from leaving, per WWL-TV.
But as Anderson was seated in her vehicle in the motel parking lot — with her daughter in the front seat — she allegedly shot Sgt. Robin, who had been standing near the door of the car and was on the phone with Child Protective Services. Ofc. Estorffe and Anderson subsequently exchanged gunfire — firing off two rounds each — police said.
Estorffe sustained bullet wounds to his head and hand and was rushed to hospital, but he died as a result of his injuries, according to the Mississippi Bureau of Investigations.
Anderson also suffered a gunshot wound to her chest and was pronounced dead at the scene. Investigators had first suspected that the Missouri woman’s gunshot wound had been self-inflicted but are not yet releasing specific findings.
"We are waiting on a complete autopsy report before we know for certain which round did that," Tindell stated.
He added that it was “likely” that Anderson was actually hit with a round from one of the officers’ firearms.
Anderson had worked as a veterinarian in nearby Ocean Springs, Jackson television station WLBT. Her Facebook page stated she’d begun working at a regional animal hospital in October. She grew up in Vicksburg, Mississippi and attended Mississippi State University, according to the Vicksburg Post.
Her daughter was physically uninjured in the shoot-out. Anderson's two older children were not at the hotel at the time, according to WLBT.
“A tragedy occurred here today in the city of Bay St. Louis as two of our finest officers’ lives were taken,” Bay St. Louis Police Chief Toby Schwartz said. “We are gathering facts and will ensure a thorough investigation into this matter.”
A candlelit vigil for Robin and Estorffe was held at Bay High Stadium on Thursday.
“This is a very sad situation, and our deepest thoughts and condolences go out to the families of our lost officers,” Bay St. Louis Mayor Mike Favre also said. “We ask that you pray for the City of Bay St. Louis, the Bay St. Louis Police Department and their families and that you keep them in your thoughts in the coming days and weeks during this difficult time.”
Other regional law enforcement agencies also offered their condolences after news of the two officers’ deaths broke. A number of officers, troopers and deputies were seen assembling outside Memorial Hospital in Gulfport on Wednesday.
“Law Enforcement agencies across the Mississippi Gulf Coast are hurting today,” the Pascagoula Police Department said in a statement on Wednesday. “We come together to honor the sacrifice and service of the two Bay St. Louis Officers, Sergeant Steven Robin and Officer Branden Estorffe, who were killed in the line of duty this morning.”
A funeral for the two slain Bay St. Louis officers has been scheduled for Dec. 21.