Funeral services will be held Friday for Cpl. Michael Middlebrook, the Lafayette police officer killed Sunday night while investigating a shooting at a convenience store.
The Lafayette Police Department said that services will be held at Our Savior's Church at 1201 E. Broussard Road. Visitation will be held at the same location earlier that day, starting at 9 a.m., as well as Thursday night from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m.
Chief Toby Aguillard spoke about Middlebrook before the City-Parish Council Tuesday, describing him as "an officer's officer, and one that was looked up to."
"He was also the cradle of compassion," he said. Aguillard also praised the officers who responded after Middlebrook was shot.
"What those officers did while their brother officer was lying there is some of the most courageous work I’ve ever seen," he said.
The man accused of shooting Middlebrook made his first brief court appearance Tuesday and was told he would be held without bond on a count of first-degree murder. Ian Paul Howard, 28, appeared for just a few minutes by teleconference for a hearing before 15th Judicial District Court Commissioner Thomas Frederick.
Howard was booked early Monday morning into the Lafayette Parish Correctional Center after police apprehended him near the Big Boy Discount Zone convenience store, where police say Howard shot at civilians prior to Middlebrook's arrival.
The two civilian victims were treated for non-life-threatening injuries. Howard also faces counts of attempted murder of a police officer and attempted murder.
LAFAYETTE — A Lafayette police officer was shot and killed Sunday night when a gunman opened…
Howard told Frederick he can afford to hire a private lawyer.
On Monday, Howard's father said that his son suffers from mental illness. Howard does not have prior criminal convictions, according to an arrest affidavit.
Middlebrook, a married father of one daughter and two stepdaughters, was a nine-year veteran with the Lafayette department. Earlier this year he won a statewide award — the Heart of Law Enforcement Award — for collecting food that would be otherwise wasted and distributing it to people in need.
Louisiana State Police, which is handling the investigation, say Middlebrook and another officer responded to a call of an aggravated assault with a gun that minutes later was upgraded to a shooting. "Upon Lafayette PD's arrival, gunfire was exchanged with the subject," according to a state police statement, which added that Howard fled before being quickly apprehended nearby.
The arrest affidavit filed by State Police states that Howard did not cooperate during the arrest process. Howard's mugshot shows his head bandaged and his face marked with bruises and scrapes.
State Police spokesman Master Trooper Brooks David said that Howard "sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was transported to a local hospital for treatment before his incarceration."
The State Police investigation continued Tuesday at the crime scene, where the Big Boy store remained closed during the day. Investigators appeared to be discussing the store's surveillance system with an employee.