A police sergeant — who first spent over two decades in the U.S. Army before turning to a police career — is being mourned on Monday after he was shot and killed in Georgia over the weekend after he responded to a robbery call.
Sgt. Kelvin Ansari, who was only 50, was shot to death on Saturday in Savannah.
The gunman himself later died when he was shot after he allegedly pointed a gun at responding officers, as Fox News and other outlets reported.
Officers lined the streets on Monday as Ansari’s body was transported from a local hospital to the crime lab of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), which will look into Ansari’s death.
“We lost a man who spent a substantial portion of his life protecting the country and protecting the community,” Savannah Police Chief Roy Minter said in a statement. “We lost a husband, we lost a father, and we lost a leader.”
Ansari spent 21 years in the Army before joining the Savannah Police Department.
He was scheduled to mark his 11th anniversary of working in the department this September.
The Savannah Police Department said it wanted to “thank area agencies and community partners for the outpouring of support since the incident occurred,” as the department also noted in its statement.
Ansari worked early on as a patrolman and investigator before advancing to the rank of sergeant.
He is survived by his wife, Charlotte, and four children, ages five to 25.
My former sergeant was murdered in the line of duty last night: our department lost a great officer; Central Precinct lost a great leader; Savannah lost a great neighbor; and the Ansari family lost everything. https://t.co/FtRZRTBHKS
— Patrick Skinner (@SkinnerPm) May 12, 2019
How many more men & women in blue do we have to lose?
I pray for Sgt. Kelvin Ansari’s family, friends, and the Savannah Police Department.
Police officers wake up every day not knowing if they will make it home.
— Andrew Pollack (@AndrewPollackFL) May 13, 2019
Condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Savannah GA Police Sergeant Kelvin Ansari, who was shot and killed by a robbery suspect on Saturday. He’s the fortieth officer to be killed in the line of duty in 2019 and is survived by his wife and four children. #NeverForget pic.twitter.com/ZwZ0HM3qqN
— Knoxville Police TN (@Knoxville_PD) May 13, 2019
21-Army veteran and Savannah, Ga., police officer Sgt. Kelvin Ansari was shot and killed Saturday night while responding to a robbery.https://t.co/l1dnKfSDka
— Stars and Stripes (@starsandstripes) May 13, 2019
Savannah Police Department Mourns the Loss of Sgt. Kelvin Ansari – SAVANNAH POLICE Praying for the family of Savannah PD Officer Ansari https://t.co/iMTaWD77eF
— Russell Whitaker (@RGWhitJr) May 13, 2019
On Saturday he and other officers were called to investigate an alleged robbery outside a barber shop, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said.
The gunman, identified as Edward Fuller III, 49, was accused of taking money and items from an individual after striking the person with a weapon.
“When officers arrived on scene, they began their investigation into the robbery, but Fuller was thought to have left the area,” the GBI said. “As the officers were continuing that investigation, Fuller was in a vehicle nearby” — which the officers did not know.
Investigators say when Ansari walked near the vehicle, Fuller jumped out and “immediately” began firing — striking him and his colleague.
Responding officers later tracked down Fuller to a shed behind a home in the area.
“Our community owes these men and all those who wear the badge a debt of gratitude.”
He was hit and wounded by an officer’s gunshot after emerging from the shed and pointing his gun at them, the GBI said.
“Ansari and Fuller both succumbed to their injuries and were pronounced deceased following lifesaving measures,” the agency added.
Ansari’s colleague was treated and released.
“Our community owes these men and all those who wear the badge a debt of gratitude,” said Savannah’s mayor, Eddie DeLoach.
Ansari was a native of Charlotte, North Carolina, before moving to Georgia and graduating from high school in the late 1980s in Early County, Georgia, as Gray Television affiliates reported.
The Early County school board confirmed his high school graduation to sister station WALB, as WTOC-11 reported.