Two Louisiana Sheriff’s Deputies Shot Dead in Mysterious ‘Ambush’

Police have five people in custody, but do not know what prompted a gunman to fire on an officer in a refinery parking lot, then kill two in a trailer park.

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St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff deputies examine a car with bullet holes at a crime scene where two sheriffs were killed and two wounded in an early morning shootout in St. John the Baptist Parish, west of New Orleans, in LaPlace, La. Thursday, Aug. 16, 2012. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Two Louisiana sheriffs deputies were killed and two other deputies injured in a shootout early Thursday morning at a LaPlace, La., oil refinery, St. John the Baptist Parish authorities said. The shootings began as one of the deputies worked a traffic duty in an industrial area west of New Orleans.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reported on its website that a suspect opened fire on the sheriff, wounding him and other officers tracked him down to a trailer park, where he attacked them, killing two and wounding another.

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At a news conference, Sheriff Mike Tregre identified the two fallen officers as Brandon Nielsen, 34, and Jeremy Triche, 27. He said Triche and another officer,┬áMichael Scott Boyington, 33 were “ambushed,” while on their patrol; with Boyington seriously wounded. The suspect’s motive remains unclear.

Deputies, searching for a car that fit the description of the vehicle involved in the shooting based on information from a tip, located it at the Riverview Trailer Park. When Triche and Neilsen approached a trailer, they questioned two men who came out of it, but a third leaped from the trailer with an assault rifle, firing on the officers, killing them and also wounding Deputy Jason Triche (no relation to Jeremy Triche).

Boyington and Triche were hospitalized and underwent surgery. Their immediate conditions were not known. Tregre said five suspects were taken in to custody by police, two of whom also suffered gunshot wounds. However, authorities are still trying to piece together why the shooting took place.

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Tregre, said Louisiana State Police have taken over the investigation,while speaking to reporters, became emotional. “This has been a very difficult day,” he said. “I lost two good officers today.

“Please pray for the two officers that were ambushed early this morning.”