Manhunt Continues for Cop Killer

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CLINTON, Mo. – A manhunt continues in Missouri as police search for a suspect who is accused of killing a police officer late Sunday night during a traffic stop.

The officer, 37-year-old Gary Michael, died after a shooter exited a Dodge Nitro at a traffic stop and started firing around 10:45 p.m. Sunday, KSHB reported.

Michael returned fire, but the gunman got back in his car and drove off. The assailant crashed his car a couple blocks away before fleeing on foot, Sgt. Bill Lowe with the Missouri State Highway Patrol told FOX 4 Kansas City.

“It’s a tragedy obviously for his family, it’s a tragedy for Clinton Police Department, but it’s a tragedy for this community,” Lowe said. “He was doing his job. He was there protecting and serving and that’s what we’re called to do. He did it, and he did it with heroic fashion.”

Although Officer Michael returned fire, it was unknown if the suspect-shooter was injured during the incident.

Related: In Memoriam Officer Gary Michael

Consequently, investigators named Ian McCarthy, 39, as a suspect in the shooting. Authorities located McCarthy’s vehicle around 6:30 a.m. Moreover, they believe he is on foot and still in the Clinton area, 75 miles southeast of Kansas City.

“We searched the house we believed the person we were looking for might have been in,” Lowe said. “He was not in that house.”

The initial reason for the traffic stop involved a registration violation, Lowe said. Officials added there wasn’t any dash cam footage of the incident.

Fox reported that court records indicate McCarthy pleaded guilty in November 2013 in Missouri to a misdemeanor driving without a valid license. In July 2015, he was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm. Court records do not indicate the disposition of that case.

Checkpoints have since been set up around Clinton, and Henry County Sheriff’s Office, Missouri State Troopers and Clinton Police have several parts of the city blocked off, FOX 4 Kansas City reported.

Michael was in his first year with the Clinton police department, and leaves behind a wife and step sons, according to FOX 4.

(Photo: Missouri State Highway Patrol)

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