Robin and Estorffe conversed with Anderson for approximately 30 minutes when they decided to contact Child Protective Services on account of the girl. Investigators believe that decision to call CPS may have triggered an irrational response from Anderson because, minutes later, Anderson drew her gun and opened fire on the two officers. Robin died at the scene, while Estorffe was taken to the hospital in grave condition. He later succumbed to his injuries.
"A tragedy occurred here today in the city of Bay St. Louis as two of our finest officers' lives were taken," said Bay St. Louis police chief Toby Schwartz. "We are gathering facts and will ensure a thorough investigation into this matter."
Anderson also died at the scene. She had taken a gunshot wound to the chest, though investigators and the local medical examiner are still working to determine whether the shot was self-inflicted or whether it came from return fire. One of the officers did manage to fire at least one round from his service weapon during the incident, WTOK has reported.
The young girl in Anderson's SUV was unharmed in the shootout. Whether she is Anderson's daughter has not been confirmed, and her current whereabouts are unknown.
Anderson graduated from Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2004 and had been working as a veterinarian ever since. About a month ago, she joined Lakeview Animal Hospital, and former colleagues were stunned by the deadly outburst. One colleague described Anderson as a "very, very compassionate person" who "cried over a bearded lizard" which had recently been treated at the clinic. Anderson grew up in Vicksburg, Mississippi, and had no criminal record.
On Thursday evening, the Bay Waveland School District is hosting a candlelight vigil in honor of the two fallen officers, and Police Chief Schwartz has asked everyone to pray for their families, as well as Anderson's family. "They, too, are victims," Schwartz noted. "They too will need the love and the support of their community."
Madison Bartlett, Estorffe's girlfriend, shared her grief in a Facebook post.
"You were patient, kind and living. The most selfless person I know. I don't want this life without you. I love you forever Branden Estorffe," Bartlett wrote.