COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Following the tragic shooting on Wire Road this morning that killed one APD officer and left two others injured, local and state leaders are offering their prayers and support for family and law enforcement as they mourn the loss of a local hero.
Auburn Police Officer William Buechner was tragically shot and killed in the incident.
Auburn Mayor Ron Anders released the following statement this afternoon:
"Our heart goes out today to the family and loved ones of Officer William Buechner who was tragically lost last night in the line of duty. Words are not sufficient to express our grief as we mourn the senseless loss of one of our own.
Please pray for his family, his loved ones and his friends. Please pray for the men and women of his other family, the Auburn Police Division. And please pray for the quick and complete recovery of his colleagues, officers Evan Elliot and Webb Sistrunk, who were wounded in the line of duty.
We have never before had to face the loss of a police officer in the line of duty. We honor Officer Buechner’s unwavering courage and that of his injured brothers in arms.
Because of the hard work of the men and women of the Auburn Police Division, we can rest knowing that the person who is alleged to be responsible for this act is in custody. Even as they grappled with their loss, our men and women in blue and their colleagues throughout the East Alabama law enforcement community worked tirelessly through the night to find the man responsible.
We thank them for their service.
I ask our community to come together to mourn and to heal. To come together to respect the privacy of these families as they do the same. To come together to be the Auburn family we have always been."
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey has also released a statement, offering condolences and honoring fallen Officer Buechner. Her statement reads as follows:
“Just last week, in Alabama and across the country, we honored the sacrifice of the men and women in law enforcement during National Peace Officers Memorial Week. As we began this week, our state was met with the tragic news that shots were fired on three of our police officers, which took the life of Officer William Buechner and wounded two other officers.
Far too often, we are reminded of the grave sacrifice the men and women in law enforcement make each day and night they go to work. Sadly, this year in our state three men did not have the chance to return home to their families and friends, all because they risked their lives to protect our communities.
The city of Auburn is somewhere I was able to call home for four important years of my life, and it will always have a very special place in my heart. I know that many others in Alabama and across the country are mourning this loss alongside Officer Buechner’s family and Auburn residents.
I commend the members of state and local law enforcement who bravely pursued and successfully captured the shooter to ensure the safety of the many students and families in the Auburn area. We offer our support and prayers to the two officers recovering from their injuries and send prayers of comfort to the Buechner family. The ultimate sacrifice of Officer Buechner will never be forgotten.”
Governor Ivey has issued a statewide directive to fly flags at half-staff in order to honor the fallen hero.
For complete coverage of the shooting click here: [UPDATE: Early morning shooting in Auburn leads to first officer death in 30+ years, police chief says]