Chief Jeff O’Dell of the Kissimmee Police Department in Florida sadly reports the death of Officer Matthew Baxter.

Officer Baxter, 27, was dispatched to a suspicious person complaint on the north side of the city where there is a high crime rate. He and his shift supervisor, Sgt. Richard “Sam” Howard, 36, responded and made contact with three subjects.

Baxter and Howard were talking with the three individuals and started a pat down search of the subjects for their safety. A fourth subject suddenly approached and a scuffle ensued. One of the suspects obtained a handgun and opened fire on both officers. It is possible that this encounter could be a set up and an ambush style shooting as neither officer returned fire.

Both men were both transported to the Osceola Regional Medical Center for treatment. Baxter succumbed to his gunshot wounds shortly after his arrival at the hospital. Howard was gravely wounded and not expected to survive.

Sergeant Howard, who is a ten-year veteran of the department, remains in the ICU on life support.

The three suspects that were contacted are in custody. One of them was the shooter, and he has been charged with Baxter’s murder. A fourth suspect is still being sought in the investigation.

Matthew Baxter served the Kissimmee Police Department for three years. His wife, who also is a Kissimmee police officer, and their four children, survive him.

Officer Matthew Baxter is gone, but will never be forgotten. EOW: Friday, August 18, 2017.

(Graphics courtesy Rose Borisow GrafX)