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BREAKING: One Missouri Officer Murdered, Another Officer Shot

St. Louis, MO – A Hermann police officer was murdered and a second officer was seriously wounded while responding to a disturbance at a convenience store on Sunday night.

A standoff with the alleged gunman remained ongoing Monday morning, KMOV reported.

The incident began at the Casey’s store at 115 MO-19 just before 9:30 p.m. on March 12, WGEM reported.

Two Hermann police officers responded to the scene after receiving a report of a disturbance, according to investigators.

They subsequently encountered 35-year-old fugitive Kenneth Lee Simpson, who has allegedly been on the run since at least April of 2022, WGEM reported.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP), Simpson opened fire on the officers, hitting them both.
A source said one of the officers was shot in the head and the second officer was shot in the chest, WGEM reported.

They were immediately flown to a St. Louis hospital, where one of the officers succumbed to his injuries.

The MSHP identified him in a tweet early Monday morning as Hermann Police Department (HPD) Detective Sergeant Mason Griffith.

“Both injured Hermann officers were transported to area hospitals,” the MSHP said. “Unfortunately, we are saddened to announce the passing of Detective Sergeant Mason Griffith, who succumbed to his injuries. The second officer is in serious but stable condition.”

The MSHP issued a Blue Alert for Simpson just before 10 p.m. on Sunday, KRCG reported.

They said Simpson fled the scene in an unknown direction in a black Jeep Wrangler.

Investigators later determined the gunman barricaded himself inside a residence across the street from the convenience store, KMOV reported.

Officers have been issuing verbal commands for Simpson to come out of the home and were preparing to breach the residence with a K9 and flashbangs, according to the news outlet.

Police said Simpson has a lengthy criminal history dating back to at least 2004, WGEM reported.

He is also the subject of multiple pending cases and has been on the run for nearly a year, according to investigators.

Investigators also searched near a motel on East 10th Street in Hermann earlier in the night after they determined Simpson had been staying there with his girlfriend, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The MSHP Division of Drug and Crime Control is handling the ongoing investigation.

This is a developing story and we will keep you updated. For all of our updates, follow us on Facebook and go to your news feed preferences under your settings, then select that you want to see more of The Police Tribune’s posts in your news feed. Otherwise, Facebook may not show you updates.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

View all articles
Written by Holly Matkin


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