PONTOON BEACH, Ill. >> A police officer was shot to death today by a man at a gas station in an Illinois suburb of St. Louis, authorities said.
Pontoon Beach Officer Tyler Timmins, 36, died after being taken to a hospital, Illinois State Police Trooper Jayme Bufford said.
The officer was shot at around 8 a.m. at a Speedway gas station along Route 111 and was rushed to a hospital in nearby Granite City before being transferred a St. Louis hospital that specializes in the most critical cases, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
Bufford said Timmins had approached a car in the gas station’s parking lot because he suspected it had been stolen, and that a man began firing on him. The suspect was taken into custody.
The vehicle that apparently sparked the officer’s interest was a stolen Toyota Tacoma pickup truck with Missouri license plates.
Illinois State Police are investigating the shooting.
Bufford did not immediately release additional information, saying that “the investigation is in its infancy.”
Timmins joined the Pontoon Beach police force in April 2020, State Police Master Sgt. Elbert Jennings said. He was a police officer in Madison County for 14 years and previously served as a police officer in Roxana, Wordon and Hartford.
Edwardsville Police Chief Michael Fillback said officers throughout the area are filling in on patrol for Pontoon Beach because that city’s officers were so shaken by the shooting.