Authorities said the Louisiana man was arrested over the weekend in a series of gunfire that killed two people, including a government soldier whose death was not detected for more than 12 hours after he was shot.
Chief soldier Adam Gobert of the Louisiana State Police was found dead in his police car around 5:00 pm Saturday at Ascension Ward, state police said at a briefing on Monday. They said that 31-year-old Matthew Reese Mayr ambushed the 47-year-old Gobert soldier at about 2:30 am after the soldier parked his car to fill out some paperwork.
“The loss of a staff member like Adam leaves a hole in your heart,” Colonel Lamar A. Davis, State Police Superintendent, said at a briefing. He said it was “totally unacceptable” that it took the police so long to discover that Soldier Gobert, a 19-year veteran of the agency, had been fatally wounded.
Colonel Davis said the delay in detecting the homicide prompted state police to consider procedural changes, including “extended GPS coverage, alerts of inactive activities, and tracking of excess personnel by executives.”
“We are learning from this experience,” he said.
Police said the death of the Gobert soldier came in the midst of Mr. World’s shootout. First, around midnight, he shot and killed two people in a mobile home park in Livingston County, police said. The Ascension Ward Sheriff’s Office said it believed Mr. Miré “knew” the victims who were expected to recover from their injuries.
Then, state police said, Mr. Mir hijacked a Chevrolet Silverado and ambushed Police Gauber at Ascension Ward. Police said it was unclear at what time Gobert’s soldier was shot, but they noted that Mr. Mayr was captured on surveillance video around 2:30 am as he drove towards the place where the soldier was parked.
State police demanded silence on Saturday so that the military could coordinate the search for Mr. Mira, who they said fled into the woods after his firing rampage. The paratroopers ending their shift around 5 a.m. were asked not to sign the contract over the radio, and perhaps this is why Soldier Gobert’s silence was unquestionable.
It was not discovered until someone reported seeing a driver who did not answer questions in a state police car, police said.
After he killed police officer Gobert, Mr. Mir broke into the home of 37-year-old Pamela Adair and 43-year-old Joseph Scheksnyder at about 3 a.m. and shot them, according to the Ascension Ward Sheriff’s Office. Ms Adair died in hospital from her injuries on Saturday while Mr Scheksnyder was in critical but stable condition.
It is unclear whether Mr Mir knew Mr Schexneider and Ms Adair, who was a mother of three, according to a fundraising page set up to cover her funeral costs.
Mr. Mayr then drove away and a state soldier on his way to another location turned on emergency lights, state police said. Police said Mr. Mayr did not dodge the road, but instead fired a shot at the soldier, who was not injured. The soldier chased after him before Mr. Mayr drove away and left his car to run into the forest. Mr. Mir opened fire as authorities approached him, Sheriff Bobby Webre of the Ascension Ward said in a briefing.
“He didn’t come out. He ran all day, ”Sheriff Webre said at a briefing. He said the authorities “managed to get rid of him.”
According to the authorities, Mr. Miré was taken into custody at about 10 pm on Saturday. State police said he received a bite from a police dog and a gunshot wound to the leg, which may have been himself. He was taken to a medical facility for an operation.
Police said he was charged with first-degree murder of a police officer and several other felonies. The motive for the execution remains clear.
Colonel Davis, the state police superintendent, was visibly flustered in a separate briefing Saturday night after the shooting. He said that the events of this day were among the most difficult of his career.
“It hurts, but we can handle it,” Colonel Davis said.
In a statement for Twitter Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday he hoped to get a “clearer picture” of what happened on Saturday. The governor added that the soldier Gobert served the state “selflessly and courageously.”
“He represents the best of us all,” he said.
According to the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund, 48 police officers associated with firearms have died in the country this year, up from 38 in the same period last year.
Claire Fahey made reporting.