More questions answered about what happened amid the Brandon standoff

Published: Jun. 2, 2023 at 7:56 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - We’re working to fill in some of the gaps in information after Thursday’s standoff that turned into a shootout in Brandon. Nearly eight hours of negotiations and exchanges of gunfire left one officer dead and another recovering in the hospital. Some of this story came from viewer questions. The main one: What happened to the house?

The home in Crossgates where the standoff took place.
The home in Crossgates where the standoff took place.(WLBT)

When you see as many police as there were on the scene in Brandon Thursday, you know there is coordination involved.

“Something of this magnitude that goes on for this many hours from one o’clock in the morning until 9:30-10:00 in the morning, it can take a toll on you without relief,” said Brandon Police Chief Wayne Dearman. “And we were able to get some of this relief by having our brothers and sisters in the metro area to come and assist us.”

That help was in the form of more than just manpower. Equipment was brought in from the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department. Our cameras captured what we now know to be what’s called a Rook that’s used in tactical operations. Brandon Police Chief Wayne Dearman explains that it has an array of equipment that serves different purposes in a situation like Thursdays. First, they were trying to get eyes on suspect Gabriel Matthew Wilson. They start with the least expensive thing, Dearman explained, breaking windows to check rooms. Then, he went radio silent.

“There was no conversation trying to determine whether or not something happened during the first, you know, shots that were fired if he was hit,” noted Wilson. “We tried looking in with drones. We had robots that were going in but never saw anything.”

That’s when they started breaking out corners where gunfire had come from to create a clear line of sight for Wilson. That ram attachment has a thermal camera that allows them to see a 360-degree view of the area when they push through a wall or window.

Earlier in the day, one of the Brandon officers was shot and injured. We’ve learned that officer got up and walked Friday, and they are hopeful he will be released from the hospital sometime this weekend.

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