(WOODBRIDGE, Va) — An Army staff sergeant was held on murder charges Sunday, accused of fatally shooting a Virginia police officer who was killed only a day after she was sworn in.
Prince William County Police Department Officer Ashley Guindon, who was on her first day on patrol, was killed when she and two other officers responded to a domestic-related incident shortly after 5:30 p.m. Saturday, at a home in Woodbridge, about 20 miles south of Washington, D.C., according to police.
The suspect’s wife, Crystal Sheree Hamilton, 29, was the one who placed the 911 call, but was shot and killed before police arrived on scene, officials said.
The three officers — Guindon along with field officer David McKeown, 33, and Jessie Hempen, 31, — were shot almost immediately upon arrival, allegedly by Ronald Hamilton, an Army staff sergeant, Prince William County Chief Stephan M. Hudson said at a news conference Sunday.
A second team of officers arrived shortly thereafter and began administering first aid to the injured officers. At some point Hamilton surrendered, Hudson said, coming out the front door.
Hamilton, 32, was taken into custody and the three officers were taken to Inova Fairfax Hospital.
Police found an 11-year-old boy, believed to be Hamilton’s son, at the home. He did not have any physical injury and was taken into safe custody of family and friends, Hudson said.
Guindon died a few hours later from her injuries. She had previously served in the Marine Corps Reserve and had family in law enforcement, according to the department.
Guindon had a long history with the Prince William County force, having interned in the forensics unit in 2011 before attending training in January 2015, Hudson said. She graduated from the police academy in June, but resigned soon after for personal reasons, he said.
She came back to the force a few months later and was sworn in Friday, Hudson said.
Hudson said Guindon had a “passion to do this job,” and a “passion to serve others that went beyond herself.”
“We ask for everyone’s thoughts and prayers as our department deals with this tragic loss,” said the Prince William County Police in a statement posted on Facebook.
McKeown and Hempen are believed to make a full recovery but it is a “long road,” according to Hudson.
Hamilton, is an active duty staff sergeant assigned to the Joint Staff Support Center at the Pentagon, an Army spokesman said. He faces several charges, including first-degree murder and murder of a law enforcement officer.
Hamilton was scheduled to be arraigned Monday morning.
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