LAWRENCE COUNTY, Ind. — Two Lawrence county police officers who were shot over the weekend are now out of the hospital and recovering.
Deputy Joshua Rhoades and Mitchell Police Officer Christian Anderson were shot during a traffic stop early Sunday morning.
Newly-elected Sheriff Greg Day had just wrapped up working third shift with deputy Rhoades and officer Anderson when his phone rang.
“I hadn’t been home 15 minutes when I got the call and it’s certainly a call that you never want to get,” Sheriff Day said.
He recounted that it was hard not to fear the worst as he rushed to the scene. But on his way there another call came, this one from deputy Rhoades as he was loaded into an ambulance.
“Just being able to talk to him for that brief moment and hear his voice,” Sheriff Day said. “Don’t get me wrong, it was still a very stressful thing but I was happy to hear that.”
The officers were shot after a traffic stop where the sheriff said they found a substantial amount of methamphetamine. The suspect, 29-year-old Anthony Richmond, was killed when police say he shot at the officers.
The sheriff said this incident has hit home for him, his department and the entire community.
“I just think that we owe it to them to work as hard as we can to stop this kind of crime in our county,” Sheriff Day said.
Following the events of this past weekend, Sheriff Day said he plans to ramp up drug enforcement efforts, specifically targeting drug dealers in the county.
“We’re not out to put every addict in jail or in prison there is some part of that that obviously is enforcement but the drug dealing is what we want to stop,” Sheriff Day said. “We want to stop the people who are bringing these large amounts into Lawrence County.”
The sheriff said the one good thing to come out of all this is seeing his community come together and lend their support to both officers.
Local school children have sent cards to the department and donations have been made in the form of donuts, pet supplies and cash.
“I know what a great place it is but an event like this truly showcases the great people that we have here,” Sheriff Day said.
A fundraiser has been started for both officers. If you’d like to donate you can do so here.