Chaplains Respond After Fatal Officer Shooting in Charlotte, NC

By   •   April 30, 2024

A woman lays flowers at a fallen officer statue near the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's headquarters in memory of those who lost their lives in Monday's shooting.

Tragedy struck the city of Charlotte, North Carolina, on Monday afternoon as four law enforcement officers were killed—and four others were injured—in a shootout at a home while serving a warrant for an arrest.

The Billy Graham Rapid Response Team (BG-RRT), at the request of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, has sent seven crisis-trained chaplains and a Mobile Ministry Center to police headquarters to offer emotional and spiritual care in the wake of unspeakable tragedy.

It was the worst law enforcement shooting since 2016 when five officers were killed in Dallas.

“The whole department of 1,800 are grieving this morning,” said Josh Holland, international director of the BG-RRT, which is based in Charlotte. “Thank you for remembering them in prayer.

“We’ll have four chaplains that will be there through the day and as long as needed over these next few days to offer support.”

Eric Hubbard, deputy director of law enforcement ministry for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, speaks with a policeman in Charlotte.

The U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force, made up of multiple agencies, was attempting to serve a warrant in the area. The subject of the arrest engaged in gunfire with a “high-powered rifle” during an hours-long standoff, according to the U.S. Marshals Service and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD).

“The CMPD reached out to us yesterday afternoon, knowing we have law enforcement chaplains who have been there and served in that way and can pray with them from that perspective,” Holland said.

The two officers from the Task Force who were killed were 14-year veterans Sam Poloche and Alden Elliott, both leaving families behind. Another, Joshua Eyer, a six-year veteran of CMPD and recent “Officer of the Month,” died at the hospital after fighting for his life for several hours. Eyer leaves behind a wife and 3-year-old son.

The name of the fourth officer killed has not been released.

“Officer Eyer was a six-year veteran with the CMPD, and I am truly grateful for his bravery, service, and ultimate sacrifice,” CMPD Police Chief Johnny Jennings wrote on X. “He will never be forgotten, and we are forever indebted.”

Please pray for the CMPD community and all those impacted by these shootings. Three of the four officers injured were also from CMPD.

“Philippians 4 says the peace of God that passes all understanding will guard our hearts and minds,” Holland said. “When it doesn’t make sense logically to feel peace in certain situations, God supernaturally gives it. And that’s what we want to pray for.”

How to Pray for Our Law Enforcement (pdf)