Two Mississippi officers killed; both suspects in custody

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(Photo: Tim Doherty/Hattiesburg American)

(CNN) – Two police officers were shot in the line of duty in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, late Saturday, officials said.

The two died from their wounds after being taken to a local hospital, CNN affiliate WDAM reported, citing Forrest County Coroner Butch Benedict. It identified them as Benjamin J. Deen, 34, and Liquori Tate, 25.

Police have apprehended both suspects, Marvin Banks and Curtis Banks, the local broadcaster reported.

The two used a police vehicle to flee, which was later found abandoned, according to WDAM.

“The men and women who go out every day to protect us, the men and women who go out every day to make sure that we are safe, were turned on tonight,” said Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree.

“Thirty years ago is the last time this happened in Hattiesburg,” Dupree said. He vowed that the perpetrators of the attack would face justice.

According to The Clarion-Ledger, a newspaper in Jackson, the last killing of a Hattiesburg officer was on New Year’s Eve 1984.

The newspaper reported that Tate was a recent graduate from the police academy, and that Deen was a K-9 officer who was named as the city’s officer of the year in 2012.

Police in Oxford, Mississippi, sent out condolences in a tweet.

“Both Hattiesburg Police Officers have died. Terrible. Prayers to the entire community and families,” it read.

Mississippi public safety spokesman Warren Strain confirmed that two officers had been shot but didn’t respond to multiple calls from CNN seeking further information on the matter.