In Memphis, a police officer has been charged with murder and kidnap after shooting a man while he was on duty.
29-year-old Patric Ferguson, who was working with the Memphis Police Department, allegedly traveled to his victim’s home, 30-year-old Robert Howard, and kidnapped him before forcing him to get into the back of his police car by holding him at gunpoint.
Once in the car, Ferguson reportedly drove to another location just down the road from Howard’s home, where he then shot the victim with his personal handgun and killed him. He did admit to shooting the victim while talking to investigators.
An accomplice of Ferguson, 28-year-old Joshua Rogers, allegedly assisted Ferguson in moving Howard’s body in an attempt to hide the evidence from the police.
Howard’s girlfriend phoned emergency services to report him missing on Wednesday after failing to establish contact with him by phone. She told the police that he had not been seen since Tuesday evening.
In a statement on Facebook, Michael Rallings — director of the police department in Memphis — expressed condolences and said that the decision of a police officer to commit such a “horrific” crime was “devastating.”
He referred to the “oath” which Ferguson took to “protect and serve” when he joined the Memphis Police Department in 2018.
He confirmed that Ferguson had been arrested and charged with murder after the death of Robert Howard.
The statement went on to say: “Patric Ferguson was arrested and immediately relieved of duty from the Memphis Police Department. Ferguson has been charged with First Degree Murder, First Degree Murder in Perpetration of Aggravated Kidnapping, Especially Aggravated Kidnapping, Abuse of a Corpse, and Fabricating and Tampering with Evidence.”
Michael Rallings added: “A second individual, 28-year-old Joshua Rogers, an acquaintance of Ferguson, assisted Ferguson with relocating Mr. Howard’s body after he was killed. Rogers was arrested and charged with Accessory After the Fact, Abuse of a Corpse, and Fabricating and Tampering with Evidence.”
There are several charges against Patric Ferguson, including murder, aggravated kidnap, abuse of a corpse, and fabricating evidence.
Rogers is also facing charges of tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse. Police have said that Ferguson and Howard did know each other but did not say how they were linked. Rogers was able to post bail.
It is not known whether either of the two men has lawyers, but a hearing is expected to take place on Thursday morning.