- Associated Press - Friday, August 7, 2020

NATCHEZ, Miss. (AP) - An off-duty Mississippi state trooper was shot to death early Friday while working a part-time job with the U.S. Postal Service.

The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation confirmed the death of Lt. Troy L. Morris, 58, of Natchez. MBI agents found Morris‘ body inside a postal service delivery truck about 4:30 a.m. on U.S. 61 in Jefferson County.

Morris was a 27-year veteran of the Mississippi Highway Patrol and worked part time as a delivery driver for the postal service.

“We are deeply saddened at the loss of Lieutenant Troy Morris,” said Col. Randy Ginn, director of the MHP. “He was a good man, friend, and a valuable member of this agency. He will truly be missed by the Mississippi Highway Patrol. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

The U.S. Postal Service and Mississippi Crime Stoppers are offering a $105,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever is responsible for the shooting.

Adams County Coroner James Lee told The Natchez Democrat that Morris, 58, was shot and killed near the Adams County-Jefferson County line.

“It appears that he was changing a flat tire on U.S. 61 leaving Fayette,” Lee said. “I arrived at the scene around 8:45 a.m. after being notified by the Jefferson County coroner, who is on medical leave. The State Crime Lab also called me about working the case in Jefferson County.”

Lee said Jefferson County Sheriff James Bailey and local law enforcement were instrumental in assisting with working what he described as a difficult scene. Everyone was noticeably heartbroken over Morris‘ death, he said.

“Troopers from around this state were vehemently searching for clues and leads to direct them to a possible suspect. The State Crime Lab sent a team of forensic experts to work the crime scene,” Lee said. “This is a sad day, not only for law enforcement but family and friends of Lt. Morris. My deepest sympathy and prayers.”

Morris‘ body was escorted under heavy guard to the Mississippi Crime Lab, where an autposy will be performed, Lee said.

“I can’t believe someone would gun down a police officer like that,” he said.

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