3 brothers in custody in Maryland police officer slaying

Maryland Flags At Half Staff For Slain Police Officer
Maryland Flags At Half Staff For Slain Police Officer

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- Three brothers were in custody on Monday in connection with the fatal shooting of a Washington-area police officer, authorities said.

Prince George's County Police Officer First Class Jacai Colson, 28, was shot in an exchange of fire with a gunman who began shooting outside police headquarters on Sunday, apparently without provocation.

See more from the scene:

The attack left the suspected gunman wounded, police said. The second suspect was believed to have accompanied the shooter but left the scene before the shooting occurred, according to investigators.

The third suspect's alleged role was unclear. The brothers' names have not been released.

"The evidence shows the gunman intended to die in a battle with police," the Prince George's department said on Twitter. A police spokesman declined to elaborate but said more details would be released at a press conference on Tuesday.

Colson was a four-year veteran and had been a narcotics detective in Prince George's County, which borders the District of Columbia.

Investigators are looking for a motive, police said.

Police Chief Henry Stawinski told reporters on Sunday that the gunman apparently opened fire on the first officer he saw outside the headquarters' district station in Landover. He continued shooting as Colson and other officers responded, the chief said.

The shooting was the second fatal attack on law enforcement officers in the area in little more than a month. Two Harford County sheriff's deputies were shot by a gunman at a restaurant near Baltimore on Feb. 10.

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan ordered flags lowered to half-staff in honor of Colson.

"The first lady and I send our sincere prayers to the family and loved ones of Officer Colson, who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to his fellow citizens and community," Hogan said in a statement late on Sunday.