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A police officer and a process server were killed while serving an eviction notice in Missouri

Two other Independence police officers were wounded but are expected to recover, officials said Thursday.

A civil employee serving an eviction notice and a police officer who responded to a call for help were killed Thursday in Independence, Missouri, authorities said.

The shooting happened at a home in the area of Elsea Smith and Bundschu Road, the Independence Police Department said on Facebook.

Police Chief Adam Dustman called the fallen officer, Cody Allen, 35, a “hero.”

“He did exactly what the men and women of law enforcement are called to do day in and day out. And I could not be more proud of him and his service to this community,” Dustman said at an afternoon news conference.

Allen had been back with the department for about two years, Dustman said, after having left law enforcement for other work.

But Allen realized "he missed it," Dustman said, and returned to a calling that was ingrained in him.

The civil process server who was killed worked for the 16th Circuit Court of Jackson County. Authorities identified him as Drexel Mack.

Mack called 911 for help, authorities said.

Two other Independence police officers were wounded but are expected to make full recoveries, Dustman said.

A male suspect was in custody, authorities said.

16th Circuit Court Judge Jalilah Otto said Mack, who was in his early 40s, had more than a dozen years of experience and was "simply doing his job — serving eviction papers."

Otto called the civil process server "a true public servant."

She said Mack was engaged to be married and had adult children.

Otto said authorities were looking into what kind of eviction notice was being served, adding there are many types, including for rent or delinquent taxes.

A call came across the radio about an officer down at 1:09 p.m. local time, the police spokesperson said.

State Highway Patrol Cpl. Justin Ewing said Thursday at a separate media briefing that more than one process server was at the home when one was fatally wounded. That's when Independence police were called to assist, which led to additional gunfire.

Kansas City, Missouri, Police Capt. Jake Becchina said his department's tactical unit had surrounded the home to keep neighbors safe. No one with the unit had made it inside the home where the eviction notice was being served, and it was unknown late Thursday afternoon whether anyone else was in there, Becchina said.

Chief Dustman lauded his department, noting officers went toward danger to the civil process server and officers who were wounded.

He said his department was shattered by the loss.

"We are a broken family," Dustman said. "But as any other family, we will surround each other and lift each other up."