A South Carolina officer was shot dead “for no reason” while responding to a domestic disturbance call in Cayce early Sunday morning, officials have said.
Police Officer Drew Barr was shot and killed as he and other officers responded to the disturbance call at a home on Rossmore Road at around 2:45 a.m. local time, Cayce Police Chief Chris Cowan said at a news conference Sunday.
The 28-year-old Cayce Police Department officer and other officers encountered a male individual standing in the front yard of the residence and “made contact” with him upon arriving at the scene, Cowan said.
As they spoke with the individual, several shots were fired from inside the residence, one of which struck and killed Barr.
Barr had served with the Cayce Police Department for six years and was assigned to the Canine Division in October 2020. He also served as a captain with the Monetta Volunteer Fire Department.
“Officer Drew was dedicated, he was married to this profession, he didn’t have children, he didn’t have a wife, he was a firefighter, he was an EMT, and he was a police officer,” Cowan said on Sunday.
“He was committed to his profession, he was committed to his community. He cared about nothing else than serving this community and he was shot and killed this morning for no reason,” Cowan added.
Cowan said that officials had spent seven hours negotiating with the suspect to try and get him out of the home safely but that he ultimately took his own life.
An investigation has been launched into the incident.
Meanwhile, the Lexington County Coroner’s Office confirmed to The Epoch Times that the identity of the suspect is Austin Henderson, 36.
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) also announced Sunday evening that it is investigating an incident where “a man shot and killed Cayce Police Officer Roy Andrew ‘Drew’ Barr” adding that, “the subject, Austin Leigh Henderson, 36, barricaded himself inside a residence where a seven-hour standoff ensued.”
According to the SLED announcement, Henderson died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Barr had survived a previous shooting when he was wounded after being ambushed during the pursuit of a stolen vehicle in 2017, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
“Our hearts in Cayce are breaking,” Mayor Elise Partin said in a statement on Sunday following news of Barr’s death. “Officer Drew Barr has been an important part of the Cayce family since 2016. All of our officers and Cayce team and citizens mourn with Officer Barr’s family.”
Monetta Volunteer Fire Department also paid tribute to the fallen officer, stating that it is “with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to one of our own.”