The officer killed in the line of duty Tuesday evening in Clinton is 30-year-old Christopher Ryan Morton. He had taken the position in the Clinton Police Department of police officer, Gary Michael, who was killed on the job last fall, according to the Missouri Governor's office.
Morton and two other police officers were shot while responding to a 911 call. His colleagues were wounded.
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens issued this statement following the shooting:
“Through the ages, the people who protect us go by different names. In one era, they are called warriors. In another, knights.
In our era, the people who walk our streets and defend the defenseless are given an honored name: they are called police officers.
Today, in the state of Missouri, we lost one of our police officers. He was a thirty-year old gentleman whose name was Ryan Morton. Officer Morton was a member of the Clinton Police Department, and late last night, he was shot and killed in the line of duty.
All of us can stop today and pray for him and his blessed memory. We can think about his family, and we can, for a moment, share in their grief. And these are good and right things, and we should do them.
I’d ask us to do one more thing: think of this police department and all police departments throughout our state. This fall, the Clinton Police Department lost Officer Gary Michael. I got to know the men and women of the Clinton Police Department and the community through that tragedy.
Officer Morton took Officer Michael’s post in the department. Those two warriors are together now, in the company of God, who has brought his sons home.
We are blessed to live in a time and place with men and women of the character and quality of Officer Morton and Officer Michael. And it’s because they are men and women of such strength and wisdom and love that we feel such grief when they leave us.
We mourn our servants today. We bless their memory. We honor their families. And we will—we must—do everything in our power to stand by this department and community in their grief.
God bless every single police officer in the state of Missouri and around the country. God bless you, and your families, and the communities you call home.”
U.S. Senator Roy Blunt also issued a statement following the death of officer, Christopher Ryan Morton. He said, “Officer Christopher Morton put his life on the line in service to his community and our nation, and we are deeply saddened by his loss,” Blunt said. “Officer Morton’s death is yet another stark reminder of the danger our law enforcement men and women face every day. Every time they put on the uniform, they put our lives and our safety ahead of their own. We are forever grateful to them and their families for their sacrifice. Our thoughts are with Officer Morton’s family, the two officers who were injured, and the Clinton Police Department.”