By Holly Matkin and Sandy Malone
Memphis, TN – Memphis Police Department (MPD) Officer Geoffrey Redd died in the line of duty on Feb. 18 after being shot while responding to a suspicious person call more than two weeks earlier.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) said the MPD received a trespassing call from a business located near the Poplar-White Station Library in East Memphis at noon on Feb. 2, WMC reported.
Thirty minutes later, police were called after the same suspect entered the library and got into a confrontation with another patron.
Officer Redd and a second MPD officer responded to the library, which is located in the 5000-block of Poplar Avenue, WMC reported.
As soon as they walked inside and confronted the suspect, police said 28-year-old Torence Jackson Jr. of Indianapolis, Indiana, pulled out a weapon and shot Officer Redd in the head.
The other officer returned fire and fatally shot Jackson, according to WMC.
MPD said the officer was gravely wounded in the exchange of gunfire and was transported to Regional One Hospital in “extremely critical condition.”
Officer Redd underwent emergency surgery and remained in critical condition for the next two weeks.
The Indianapolis Metro Police Department’s inmate database indicated that Jackson was a career criminal who had been arrested more than 30 times in Indianapolis, WMC reported.
His arrest history included charges for robbery, criminal trespassing, resisting arrest, possession of and dealing marijuana, and battery by means of a deadly weapon.
Jackson was facing charges of theft and resisting arrest in Indiana at the time of his death, WHBQ reported.
The fatal shooting was not Jackson’s first encounter with the Memphis police, either, WHBQ reported.
MPD records showed officers arrested Jackson a month earlier on charges of unlawful possession of both a weapon and a controlled substance after a foot pursuit.
Investigators said that after he was apprehended, they located two rifles and a bag of ammunition he had allegedly stashed next to a fence.
The MPD confirmed Officer Redd’s death in a press release on Feb. 18.
“With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of Officer Geoffrey Redd,” the department said. “Despite the best efforts and excellent medical care by those at Regional One, Officer Redd succumbed to his injuries on Feb. 18, 2023, at the hospital.”
Officer Redd dedicated 15 years of his life to his law enforcement career, serving at the Union, Old Allen, Mt. Moriah, Raines, Appling Farms, and Ridgeway Stations during the course of his career.
The 49-year-old officer also served his country as a U.S. Marine and was the director of security at his church, according to the MPD.
Officer Redd suffered extensive injuries years prior to his death when he was hit by a vehicle in the line of duty, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
He ultimately recovered and returned to work.
Officer Redd leaves behind his wife, three daughters, and four grandchildren, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
“I am very saddened by the loss of Officer Geoffrey Redd,” Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said in a statement to the Commercial Appeal.
“He served with honor his country as a marine and his city as a police officer, and we lift up his dedicated public service to the City of Memphis for over 15 years. He was also a beloved son, father and husband, and my deepest condolences go to his family and his Memphis police family,” Strickland said.
🔹 Blessed Are The Peacemakers 🔹
Police Officer Geoffrey Redd
Memphis Police Department, Tennessee
EOW: Saturday, February 18, 2023#EnoughIsEnough #OfficerDown #EOW #ThinBlueLine pic.twitter.com/KF7w4HDtdC
— National Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) (@GLFOP) February 21, 2023
Officer Redd update. pic.twitter.com/wNOx6qgv5P
— Memphis Police Dept (@MEM_PoliceDept) February 18, 2023
The #FBI sends our condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Officer Geoffrey Redd. He served with the Memphis Police Department (@MEM_PoliceDept) in Tennessee for 15 years. pic.twitter.com/H1oZi6ySBw
— FBI (@FBI) February 19, 2023
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Memphis Police Department Officer Geoffrey Redd, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Officer Geoffrey Redd, your life mattered.