Updated 5:21 p.m.
For the second time in two months, a Kansas City, Kansas, police officer was killed in the line of duty.
He died Tuesday just before 3:00 p.m. at KU Hospital.
The officer was identified as Capt. Robert Melton.
Melton was shot at 22nd and Haskell in KCK after pursuing a vehicle believed to be involved in a drive-by shooting, according to KCKPD Chief Terry Zeigler. “As Capt. Melton was arriving the suspects bailed from the vehicle and opened fire striking Capt. Melton and fatally wounding him.”
Police and the FBI are currently searching the area for additional suspects. Several blocks were shut off just to the west of the scene of the shooting.
Two months ago, KCK police detective Brad Lancaster, 39, was shot and killed while on duty.
“Our city and department just went through the tragic loss of Detective Lancaster in May. Obviously that’s a lifetime of healing all by itself,” said Unified Government Mayor Mark Holland.
While the investigation continues, Holland strongly hinted that Melton was not targeted. He says more information will be released at a news conference Wednesday morning.
In the meantime, Holland urged calm. “My encouragement is that we not go down a path of fear and conclusions and hatred but that we go down a path of thoughtful, prayerful reflection about what we could all do to make our communities safer.”
Melton received an associate of general studies in corrections from Kansas City Kansas Community College in 2000, according to a statement from the school. He worked with the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department since late 1999 and previously worked as a deputy at the Wyandotte County Sheriff's Office. He was also a member of the Kansas National Guard, the KCKCC statement said.
You can watch the news conference here: