Flags were at half mast Tuesday as the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, along with state officials, held an emotional press conference a day after a deadly standoff in a normally quiet Charlotte neighborhood claimed the lives of four law enforcement officers and injured four others. 

Flags around the state stood at half mast Tuesday (Spectrum News 1/Claudia Puente)
Flags around the state stood at half mast Tuesday. (Spectrum News 1/Claudia Puente)

Police also gave new updates, including the name of the fourth officer who died in the shootout. Deputy U.S. Marshal Thomas Weeks, a 13-year veteran, died in the hospital from his gunshot wounds. He is survived by a wife and four children.

"If you could speak to each one of those fallen officers today and ask them the question, 'why?' they'd say 'why what?'," said Western District U.S. Marshal Terry Burgin, who worked with Weeks for 20 years.

CMPD Chief of Police Johnny Jennings also clarified that Terry Clark Hughes, the man officers were seeking to arrest, was the only shooter. Police originally said there were two shooters, but Jennings said Tuesday that as of now, they have only identified one shooter.  

Twelve officers discharged their service weapons during the shootout. The officers are on administrative leave, which is standard practice as the department investigates. 

Police also clarified the role of two women found in the house where the shooting happened. Jennings said the two women, one 17 years old and one older woman, are being questioned by police and are cooperating with the investigation. Neither woman has been charged with anything.

The press conference also honored the life of Joshua Eyer, who died from his injuries late Monday night after being shot during the standoff. Eyer was one of four officers killed in the shooting, according to police. Four others were treated for injuries, three for gunshot wounds and one for a broken foot.

"Today is a day of heartbreak in North Carolina," North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein said. 

Eyer is survived by his wife and a 3-year-old son. Charlotte City Councilman Tariq Bokhari set up a GoFundMe to benefit his family

Ashley Eyer, the wife of Joshua, is the Director of Academic Success at Pfieffer University in Misenheimer, North Carolina. 

The university held a time of prayer and reflection Tuesday, and asked people to keep Ashley and her son Andrew in their thoughts and prayers. 

Earlier this month, Joshua Eyer received an officer-of-the-month award. 

"He's going to be sorely missed in this law enforcement community," Jennings said. "And he was one of the ones that you the kind of officer you want on your team. And as he demonstrated yesterday, he's the kind of officer you want to respond when you need help."

Officer Joshua Eyer's cruiser, turned into a memorial (Spectrum News 1/Alexis Bell)
Officer Joshua Eyer's cruiser was turned into a memorial. (Spectrum News 1/Alexis Bell)

Two of the U.S. Marshals killed also served as correction officers. Sam Poloche and Alden Elliott were both 14-year N.C. Department of Adult Correction veterans, according to N.C. Secretary of Adult Correction Todd Ishee.

"These officers died as heroes and made the ultimate sacrifice in their service to our state. We remember them, we honor their service, we send our deepest condolences to their families and friends, and we pray for healing for all affected by this tragic incident," Ishee said.

Poloche was a husband and father of two, and Elliot leaves behind a wife and child.

An emotional outpouring

"Probably the most difficult, all of them are difficult," Jennings said at Tuesday's press conference, fighting back tears. "You know the last few days, it's just been very tough. And knowing that you, you have families that are hurting right now."

Tuesday's press conference also honored the fallen officers and the resiliency of the city, as speakers fought back tears.

"Yesterday, eight families had to be told that their loved one had been shot in the line of duty. It was news they hoped would never come. Tragically, four of those families have made the ultimate sacrifice," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said with a solemn face. "Yesterday, North Carolina and this country lost four heroes and saw four other heroes wounded."

Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles, who spoke through tears at Monday's press conference, and she described how hospital workers stood at attention as Eyer's body was escorted out Monday night. 

"Today, we say our prayers as we get through this difficult time," Lyles said. "But we as a community have to remember that at some point we have to give this back to those families. And I hope that we will all support."

Before observing a moment of silence, Lyles talked about the support she has received from mayors across the country, and even the president.

"They are heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice, rushing into harm’s way to protect us," President Biden said in part in a statement released Monday after the shooting. "We mourn for them and their loved ones. And we pray for the recoveries of the courageous officers who were wounded."

Jennings also described the outpouring of support since Monday's shooting. 

"I'm just overwhelmed by the support there," Jennings said. "What you see behind me, the support. For all of these very important people to come in and and stand beside me and our department and our city and that just means so much. And that's what keeps us going. And that's what that's what it's all about. That's what Charlotte is all about."

The department is organizing memorial services for the officers. Jennings says they hope to hold the services next month during National Police Week. 

"It's a scar on Charlotte, but a scar that won't heal," Jennings said. "We're a resilient profession and a resilient city, and we will certainly get through this. But it will take time and it will take support from all of our community as our officers continue to keep our community safe even through this tragedy."


Around 1:30 Monday afternoon, U.S. Marshals and CMPD served a warrant at a home on the 5000 block of Galway Drive. They were looking for 39-year-old Terry Clark Hughes, who was wanted in Lincoln County for possession of a firearm by a felon and two counts of felony flee to elude, according to a Facebook post by Lincoln County Sheriff Bill Beam.

The home that police raided Monday (Spectrum News 1/Alexis Bell)
The home that police raided Monday. (Spectrum News 1/Alexis Bell)

"As officers approached, the male subject discharged his firearm, striking multiple officers. These officers requested immediate response from other officers. As officers responded, the gunfire continued, striking additional officers," police said. 

According to authorities, Hughes emerged and began shooting at them before being fatally shot in the front yard of the house. Jennings originally said there was a second shooter, but clarified Tuesday that Hughes was the only identified shooter. 

A rifle, a handgun and ammo were all found in the home, according to police. 

The shootout kept the usually quiet neighborhood on lockdown for several hours, but the shelter-in-place order was lifted Monday afternoon after hundreds of officers, including CMPD's SWAT team, investigated the area. 

Law enforcement also closed down several roads to allow ambulances to get to the hospital faster.

Several schools in the area tightened security and went on modified lockdowns during the incident, but gave the all-clear around 4 p.m. Monday. 

Charlotte police are still investigating the shootout, and say they will release updates as they come in. 



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