Girl, 2, shot dead by armed police in tragic family hostage stand-off

Clesslynn Crawford, aged two, died from a police bullet in a hostage standoff in Texas where her mother was gunned down by the father who later turned the firearm on himself

Clesslynn Crawford, aged two, was killed in a hostage situation in Kansas
Clesslynn Crawford, aged two, was killed in a hostage situation in Kansas

A two-year-old girl was tragically killed by armed police in a tense stand-off with a father, who was holding his family hostage, leading to a total of three deaths.

Clesslynn Crawford was killed as was her mother Taylor Shutte who tried to flee a camping trailer, in Kansas, but was gunned down by her husband Eli Crawford, on March 26.

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KSI) believes that Eli Crawford then shot himself.

The tragedy unfolded with police called to the home in Cherokee County around 7.15pm having received an emergency call from a woman asking for help due to a “domestic disturbance”.

Police then knocked on the door of the camping trailer where Eli Crawford opened the door before slamming it shut.

Clesslynn Crawford was killed with her mother Taylor Shutte



At that point two-year-old Clesslynn opened the door, said the KSI, and her mother tried to escape.

“Crawford then stepped out and shot and killed Shutte. He also began shooting at the four responding officers,” the KSI said in a statement.

The father then fired over 90 rounds at police who had received reinforcements including from Joplin Police Department’s SWAT team.

Authorities stated: “At approximately 9:25pm, a law enforcement officer fired one round into the camping trailer.

Authorities revealed that she died from a police bullet



“Officers approached the residence and located Eli Crawford deceased inside from a gunshot wound.

“Shutte and Clesslynn Crawford were also discovered deceased from fatal gunshot wounds. No law enforcement officers were injured during the incident.”

Afterwards it was revealed that Clesslynn had died from a police bullet.

“The investigation indicates that 2-year-old Clesslynn Crawford died as a result of the single round fired by an officer from the Joplin Police Department,” stated the KSI.

Police were fired on by Eli Crawford who later turned a gun on himself it is believed


Cherokee County Sheriff)

“The investigation is ongoing. We ask the public for patience as KBI agents finish their work. The incident is being thoroughly and independently investigated.

“Once it concludes, the findings will be presented to the Cherokee County Attorney to determine if criminal charges will be filed.”

Joplin Police Chief Sloan Rowland said it was a “horrific outcome” and offered condolences.

“This is a horrific outcome to what had already started as a very tragic incident,” he said, according to the Joplin Globe.

“Our heartfelt condolences go out to the families involved and the surrounding community. We ask that you pray for the victims and everyone involved.”

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