Cleveland Police Officer Dies in Shooting, Informant Also Killed: Authorities

September 4, 2020 Updated: September 4, 2020

Three suspects were in custody in Cleveland on Friday after an officer was shot and killed on Thursday night, officials said.

Officer James Skernivitz, 53, who had been with the department since 1998, was shot and killed, officials told news outlets.

Skernivitz was working on an undercover drug operation as he and his informant were ambushed while in a car, officials said.

Police Chief Calvin Williams told CBS News that “Cleveland lost one of its finest” with his death.

“Detective Skernivitz gave his life trying to keep danger off the streets of Cleveland. This tragedy shows once again the valor and honor of the police—and that there are yet dangerous, evil men in the world who must be brought to justice. My heart breaks for his family and I pray that in their grief, they find solace in his legacy of service and sacrifice,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost told 19 News in Cleveland.

Gov. Mike DeWine, a Republican, offered his condolences to the officer’s family.

According to 19 News, three suspects are now in custody in connection to the officer’s death. Officials have not released the names of those who are in custody.

Officials also confirmed that informant Scott Dingess was also killed.

Anyone with information about the case can call 911 or Crimestoppers at 216-25-CRIME.

So far, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, 34 police officers have been shot and killed around the United States between Jan. 1 and Sept. 4, 2020. Thirty-five officers were killed in firearms-related incidents in the same time period last year.

Other details about the officer’s death and case were not provided.