Officer hit with friendly fire leaves hospital

Family searching for answers after father killed in officer-involved shooting

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - The Memphis police officer shot by friendly fire on Tuesday night is out of the hospital.

Police arrived at Anthony Bess' house in Whitehaven to arrest him for an aggravated assault charge. When Bess' family opened the door, officers saw him inside with his hands behind his back.

Officers say when they asked him to show his hands, Bess refused, pulled out a loaded .45 Ruger, and pointed it at officers. That's when police shot Bess. Moments later, another officer fired a shot, hitting a fellow officer in the arm.

Bess later died at the hospital.

Two MPD officers are now on paid leave pending an investigation into the shootings.

A sign that reads "Stop the Killing" stands in front of the home where Bess was shot.

Bess' family says he was shot inside his bedroom. They now want answers about how everything happened.

"They shouldn't get away with that," Anthony Bess' daughter Ebonye Bess said. "Now that you see that one of your fellow officers shot."

Police say Bess' aggravated assault charge stems from an incident in Collierville last week. Investigators say Bess hit an off-duty officer with his car outside of a Kroger as he tried to get away from a shoplifting scene.

Bess has a lengthy rap sheet that includes charges of DUI, theft, burglary, forgery, and contempt of court.

The family is praying for peace.

"He was a good person. I don't wish death on anyone," Bess' ex-girlfriend Melissa Rudd said.

Police have not yet released the names of the officers involved in the shooting.

Memphis Police Association President Mike Williams says officers could use more continuous training.

"Everyone needs to understand when you go into a room and bullets start flying, a lot of times individuals become very nervous. That's something that you experience on a daily basis," he explained. "People need to understand that we have a very dangerous job and it's getting even more dangerous."

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