Long line of mourners at visitation for slain Baton Rouge officer

Left to Right: Ofcs. Montrell Jackson, Brad Garafola, Matthew Gerald

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Latest on the funerals of three officers killed in Baton Rouge (all times local):

6 p.m.

The line of mourners awaiting to pay respects to a Baton Rouge police officer who was among three law enforcement officers killed by a gunman stretched around the funeral home.

Visitation for Matthew Gerald on Thursday evening was to be followed with his funeral service Friday.

American flags dotted the area, and many who waited to offer condolences wore blue ribbons. Mourners included elected officials, law enforcement officers and others with no personal connection to Gerald.

Sherri Parent, whose brother is a city police officer, stood outside of the funeral home watching as more and more people arrived. As she dabbed at tears, Parent said she was amazed by the show of support.

Gerald and two other officers were killed Sunday in what police described as an ambush.


1:50 p.m.

A sheriff's deputy wounded in the shooting that killed three law enforcement officers has been released from a Baton Rouge hospital.

Meghan Parrish, a spokeswoman for Baton Rouge General Medical Center, says about 300 hospital staff members and others lined up to applaud East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Deputy Bruce Simmons as he left the hospital Thursday.

Baton Rouge police officers Montrell Jackson and Matthew Gerald, and sheriff's deputy Brad Garafola were killed in the shootout that wounded Simmons and two other officers on Sunday morning.

Another deputy, Nicholas Tullier, remains in the hospital. Baton Rouge Mayor-President Kip Holden said Tullier was taken off of life-support machines on Tuesday, but that he was still alive.

Police shot and killed a lone gunman, Gavin Long, after he shot the six officers.


12:45 p.m.

A former law enforcement officer who owns a casket-making business has designed and donated coffins for the funerals of three officers who were killed Sunday in Baton Rouge.

Trey Ganem is owner of Trey Ganem Designs in Edna, Texas. He said he felt like he had to do something for the officers after he heard about how they were ambushed Sunday by a man who police said was targeting law enforcement.

Ganem told The Associated Press that his employees spent hours researching each fallen officer and speaking to his family before designing his casket.

Among the designs: A Superman shield for the casket that will hold Baton Rouge Police Cpl. Montrell Jackson's body. Ganem said Montrell's wife said she "thought of him as Superman."

Also killed in the ambush were Officer Matthew Gerald of the Baton Rouge Police Department and Deputy Brad Garafola Sr. of the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office. Ganem said Gerald's casket would reflect his military background, but he didn't elaborate on the design during a quick telephone interview while he was driving.

Ganem said Texas officers were escorting the caskets to Baton Rouge on Thursday from Edna, located about 90 miles southwest of Houston.

The officers' funerals are scheduled over the next few days, starting Friday.


3 a.m.

Baton Rouge is preparing for the funerals of three slain police officers.

Visitation is set Thursday evening for city police department officer Matthew Gerald. Gerald's funeral is set for Friday morning.

The funeral for East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Deputy Brad Garafola is set for Saturday.

Montrell Jackson, also of the city police department, will be buried after a Monday funeral.

All three were shot to death Sunday by a lone gunman, Gavin Long, who was fatally shot by police after killing the three and wounding three others.