Slain Louisiana police officers ranged from rookie to veterans

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What we know about the Baton Rouge shooting

July 17 (Reuters) - The six Baton Rouge, Louisiana, police officers killed or wounded in an attack on Sunday morning ranged from a newcomer to the force to veteran officers, officials said, in the latest mass shooting to afflict a U.S. city.

Three officers died and a fourth was fighting for his life after the attack by a suspect who opened fire on them in Louisiana's capital city.

The suspect, identified by a U.S. official as Gavin Long of Kansas City, Missouri, was believed to have acted alone.

The dead included Montrell Jackson, a 32-year-old new father who had served for 10 years with the Baton Rouge Police Department, and Matthew Gerald, at 41 a newly minted law enforcement officer with a military background, the police department said on its Facebook page.

Also slain was Sheriff's Deputy Brad Garafola, 45, a father of four, local media reported, citing Sheriff Sid Gautreaux and Garafola's wife, Tonja.

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Police officers killed in Baton Rouge identified
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Police officers killed in Baton Rouge identified
This undated photo made available by the Baton Rouge Police Dept. shows officer Montrell Jackson. Jackson, 32, has been identified as one of the police officers killed in a shooting early Sunday, July 17, 2016, in Baton Rouge, La. (Baton Rouge Police Dept. via AP)
This undated photo made available by the Baton Rouge Police Dept. shows police officer Matthew Gerald. Gerald, 41, was killed by a gunman in Baton Rouge, LA., Sunday, July 17, 2016. (Baton Rouge Police Dept. via AP)
This undated photo made available by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office shows deputy Brad Garafola. Garafola and at least two other Baton Rouge law enforcement officers investigating a report of a man with an assault rifle were killed Sunday, July 17, 2016, less than two weeks after a black man was fatally shot by police here in a confrontation that sparked nightly protests that reverberated nationwide. (East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office via AP)
This undated photo provided by Trenisha Jackson shows her husband, Baton Rouge Police Officer Montrell Jackson, one of the three Baton Rouge law enforcement officers who were killed Sunday, July 17, 2016. Three Baton Rouge law enforcement officers investigating a report of a man with an assault rifle were killed Sunday, less than two weeks after a black man was fatally shot by police here in a confrontation that sparked nightly protests that reverberated nationwide. (Courtesy of Trenisha Jackson via AP)
In this 2016 photo provided by Trenisha Jackson, her husband, Baton Rouge Police Officer Montrell Jackson, holds his son Mason at a Father's Day event for police officers in Baton Rouge, La. Montrell Jackson and two other Baton Rouge law enforcement officers investigating a report of a man with an assault rifle were killed Sunday, less than two weeks after a black man was fatally shot by police here in a confrontation that sparked nightly protests that reverberated nationwide. (Courtesy of Trenisha Jackson via AP)
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"He loved us so much," Tonja Garafola told the Baton Rouge Advocate newspaper. "He didn't deserve this."

Friends and relatives of Jackson took to Facebook to remember him.

"Rest in Peace to my former partner and one of the best cops I've ever known... His name was Montrell Jackson!" Facebook user Marcus Tillman said in a post, which received more than 8,000 likes and 6,000 shares by midday on Sunday. "He was a black life that apparently didn't matter to the one that took it!"

The Facebook page shows several pictures of a baby boy, and comments suggested that the child was Jackson's son.

"Cuz, this is you all over again," commenter Catina Williams Alexander wrote beneath the photo of the child. The Facebook page includes a picture of a police badge, posted in 2015.

Images from the scene:

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Baton Rouge shooting -- images from the scene
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Baton Rouge shooting -- images from the scene
BATON ROUGE, LA - JULY 17: An East Baton Rouge Police officer patrols Airline Hwy after 3 police officers were killed early this morning on July 17, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. According to reports, one suspect has been killed while others are still being sought by police. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
BATON ROUGE, LA - JULY 17: East Baton Rouge Police officers patrol Airline Hwy after 3 police officers were killed early this morning on July 17, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. According to reports, one suspect has been killed while others are still being sought by police. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
BATON ROUGE, LA - JULY 17: East Baton Rouge Police officers patrol Airline Hwy after 3 police officers were killed early this morning on July 17, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. According to reports, one suspect has been killed while others are still being sought by police. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
BATON ROUGE, LA - JULY 17: Baton Rouge Police officers patrol Airline Hwy after 3 police officers were killed early this morning on July 17, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. According to reports, one suspect has been killed while others are still being sought by police. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
BATON ROUGE, LA - JULY 17: Baton Rouge Police officers patrol Airline Hwy after 3 police officers were killed early this morning on July 17, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. According to reports, one suspect has been killed while others are still being sought by police. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
BATON ROUGE, LA - JULY 17: Baton Rouge Police officers patrol Airline Hwy after 3 police officers were killed early this morning on July 17, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. According to reports, one suspect has been killed while others are still being sought by police. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
An American flag flies at half mast near the scene of a fatal shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States, July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Penney
A police helicopter flies near the scene of a fatal shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States, July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Penney
An officer from the Louisiana Wildlife Service blocks off a road near the scene of a fatal shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States, July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Penney
Law enforcement vehicles block access to Airline Highway near the scene of a fatal shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman
Police officers block off Airline Highway near the scene of a fatal shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States, July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Penney
A law enforcement helicopter is seen near the scene where police officers were shot in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman
A law enforcement helicopter is seen near the scene where police officers were shot in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman
Lew enforcement officers block a road after a fatal shooting of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman
Police officers block off a road near the site of a shooting of police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States, July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Penney
Police officers arrive near the site of a shooting of police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States, July 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joe Penney
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'BIG TEDDY BEAR'

Jonathan Saunders, a friend of Jackson, said the officer was a big man - but gentle and kind.

"He was 220 pounds of Teddy Bear," said Saunders, who now lives in New Orleans and once worked at a Laser Tag business where Jackson was a part-time security guard. "If you needed a hug, you could walk up to him and hug him. He cared about everybody."

Saunders said in a phone interview that Jackson's child was just a few months old.

A Facebook page belonging to Matthew Gerald in Baton Rouge featured images of law enforcement badges, and friends and family posted condolences on a page that appeared to belong to his wife.

Earlier in the day, Dechia Badeaux Gerald posted a news video of the shooting aftermath with the comment: "Everyone please pray!!! My husband along with others is out there."

A 41-year-old sheriff's deputy was in critical condition, "fighting for his life as we speak," said Gautreaux.

In addition, one sheriff's deputy was in surgery for non-life-threatening injuries, Gautreaux said. A 41-year-old Baton Rouge police officer, on the force for nine years, also received a non-life-threatening injury, Dabadie said.

"We are grieving for each other, we are grieving for our loss and we are grieving for our families," Gautreaux told a news conference on Sunday.

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