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Two officers presumed dead after a shooting in a suburb of Syracuse, New York, authorities say

Two officers and a suspect were killed Sunday evening after a shootout in Liverpool, N.Y., a suburb of Syracuse, authorities said.

Syracuse Police Chief Joseph Cecile told a news conference that at approximately 7 p.m., two Syracuse officers “initiated a traffic stop on a suspicious vehicle” that was leaving. The officers “lost sight of the vehicle” but were able to track it “to an address in Liverpool” via the license plate.

According to Cecile, Syracuse officers and Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrived at the address just after 8 p.m. and inspected the suspect vehicle when they noticed it was believed to contain firearms. Then suddenly shots rang out and there was “a burst of gunfire.”

Cecile said a Syracuse officer and a sheriff’s deputy, along with the suspect, were hit and taken to a hospital, where they were all pronounced dead. It was not said if anyone else was injured.

Cecile said the slain officer had been on the job for about three years. Onondaga County Sheriff Toby Shelley told reporters that the slain deputy was “experienced” and “very well-liked in his community. … (He was) just a great guy.”

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Cecile said, “We lost two heroes tonight.”

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh called it a “dark day” for his city, saying “our worst nightmare is coming true. Our thoughts are now with the families of those two officers. Those heroes.”

“Every time something like this happens, people come together, no matter where they come from,” Sheriff Shelley said, according to CBS Syracuse affiliate WTVH. “It’s a challenge. I don’t care if you’ve been in this job for 20 years or one, it’s a challenge.”

According to Salina’s website, Liverpool is one of five small suburban communities within the city of Salina.

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