Man charged with aggravated murder in slaying of 2 officers

Officer Morelli's car (Photo: Facebook page "Out and About in Westerville with Kathy Cocuzzi"
Officer Morelli's car (Photo: Facebook page "Out and About in Westerville with Kathy Cocuzzi"

WESTERVILLE (FOX19 NOW) - The man accused of killing two suburban Columbus police officers in the line of duty faces two counts of aggravated murder.

Columbus police filed the charges against suspect Quentin L. Smith, 30, late Sunday afternoon.

Officers Anthony Morelli, 54, and Eric Joering, 39, were fatally shot about noon Saturday as they responded to a 911 hang-up call, according to Westerville police.

Smith is accused of opening fire on the officer at a townhouse on Crosswind Drive.

Smith also was shot during the incident, according to police. He remains hospitalized in stable condition and is expected to survive.

Westerville Police Department will escort the officers' bodies from the Franklin County Coroner's Office at 11 a.m. Monday to separate funeral homes, city officials announced Sunday.

Morelli will be escorted to Moreland Funeral Home and Joering will be taken to Hill Funeral Home.

The city says the public is invited to line South State Street in Westerville from Interstate 270 North to Uptown Westerville around 11:30 a.m.

Funeral information is expected to be provided by the city at a later time.

Gov. John Kasich on Monday ordered all flags at half-staff until the officers are laid to rest.

Police in the neighboring community of Hilliard covered shifts in Westerville Sunday to allow officers time to grieve their fallen colleagues.

Stay with FOX19 NOW for updates as this story develops.

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