Police officer fatally shot during mask dispute at basketball game, Louisiana cops say

Dawson White
·1 min read

A Louisiana police officer was killed over the weekend following a mask dispute at a New Orleans high school, police say.

Friday night, a man — later identified by multiple news outlets as 35-year-old John Shallerhorn — tried to enter a basketball game at George Washington Carver High School without wearing a mask, WDSU reported.

That’s when police say Shallerhorn got into an altercation with a staff member.

Martinus Mitchum, a Tulane University police officer who was working security at the game, intervened and escorted Shallerhorn from the building, according to WVUE.

But as Shallerhorn left, police say he pulled out a gun and fired at Mitchum.

Police arrived around 6:15 p.m. to find that Mitchum had been shot in the chest. He was rushed to a hospital, where he later died, police said.

Shallerhorn was arrested. He’s also accused of committing armed robbery the same evening.

Just before the shooting, police say Shallerhorn approached a person sitting in a car in the school parking lot, raised his shirt to flash a gun then demanded the person’s medallion and chain, WDSU reported.

Shallerhorn is charged with armed robbery and first-degree murder of a policeman, according to jail records.

Mitchum is remembered as a man who loved public service.

“We are deeply saddened by the senseless and tragic death of TUPD Corporal Martinus Mitchum,” the Tulane University Police Department said in a statement.

“Corporal Mitchum was a dedicated police professional who had a heart for service for the Tulane community.”

George Washington Carver High School called Mitchum a “fixture” at sporting events and said he sacrificed his life to protect others, NOLA.com reported.