MILWAUKEE — Police are collecting evidence at a Milwaukee home where a police officer was fatally shot while serving a warrant on Wednesday.
Officers on Thursday cordoned off part of the residential neighborhood where 35-year-old Officer Matthew Rittner was killed.
The 17-year police veteran was shot as members of Milwaukee’s Tactical Enforcement Unit served a search warrant on someone suspected of illegally selling firearms and drugs. Investigators say a 26-year-old suspect fired several rounds. He was later arrested.
Ritter is the third Milwaukee police officer killed on the job in the last eight months. The department had previously gone more than two decades without a line-of-duty death.
In a news release Thursday, the police department thanked the public for their support. The police department asked media outlets to give the family privacy and refrain from using personal photos of Rittner and his family and instead use his police department photo.
The release stated the department was also made aware of GoFundMe accounts that have not been vetted through the department. The release stated, “We have also been made aware that individuals are selling merchandise on the behalf of Officer Rittner without the permission of his family or the Milwaukee Police Department. Although we appreciate everyone’s thoughts, prayers, and good deeds, we will provide information on how to donate to the Rittner family as soon as possible.”
Rittner reportedly served in the U.S. Marines and was deployed twice to Iraq. He was a 2001 graduate of Greenfield High School and leaves behind a wife and young child.
Following the news of his death, police departments throughout the area gave their condolences on social media.
The Racine Police Department wrote: “Godspeed to our brother who gave his life in service to others. Your honorable service and sacrifice will never be forgotten.”
Governor Tony Evers ordered the flags of the United States and the State of Wisconsin to be flown at half-staff in honor of Rittner until sunset on the date of burial.
Rittner’s body was transported Thursday afternoon from the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s office to Krause Funeral Home at 21600 W. Capitol Drive.
Outside the patrol station at 47th and Vilet streets, a memorial to Rittner was set up.
“Godspeed to our brother who gave his life in service to others. Your honorable service and sacrifice will never be forgotten.” <&textAlign: right>Racine Police Department Facebook page