Police officer and suspect killed in shooting during Charleroi house search

A 36-year-old police officer and a suspect died in a shootout during a house search in Lodelinsart, Charleroi, on Monday morning. A second officer is in a critical condition in hospital. The suspect was under investigation for criminal conspiracy and drug, vehicle and arms trafficking.

The examining magistrate had issued several search warrants as part of the case, which was being investigated by the Charleroi public prosecutor’s office. The search at the suspect’s home required “increased security, given the suspect’s profile”, public prosecutor Vincent Fiasse said at a press conference on Monday afternoon. 

Once on the scene, at around 6.30, officers from the special police unit spoke to a woman after entering the house and identifying themselves. “Almost immediately, from behind a door, the suspect’s hand appeared holding a firearm,” Fiasse said. “He practically emptied his magazine at the police officers.”

"Today is a black day for everyone within the police"

Three officers were hit. One of them, aged 36, died and a second, aged 33, is in a critical condition. The condition of the third man, aged 34, is not life-threatening.

Opposition party N-VA has called for a meeting of the House Committee on Home Affairs as soon as possible. “My first thoughts are with the family and the force. I am also left with many questions,” said N-VA MP Koen Metsu. “How could this have happened? We therefore ask that the Home Affairs Committee meet as soon as possible to clarify this incident with [Interior] minister [Annelies] Verlinden.”

Interior minister Annelies Verlinden at a press conference following the shooting © BELGA PHOTO VIRGINIE LEFOUR
Interior minister Annelies Verlinden at a press conference following the shooting © BELGA PHOTO VIRGINIE LEFOUR

"Today is a black day for everyone within the police," Verlinden said at Monday's press conference. "We heard with surprise this morning about the death of our colleague. Our thoughts are with the family and colleagues of the victims. We are going to do everything we can to support them." 

Paul Magnette, the mayor of Charleroi , expressed his “shock and indignation” at the events via a post on X. “Our police forces do a fantastic job protecting citizens and reducing crime,” he said.


Members of the police technical unit inspect the scene in Lodelinsart © BELGA PHOTO VIRGINIE LEFOUR

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