Mississippi man suspect in officer involved shooting
Published 6:40 am Friday, June 10, 2022
The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation
is alerting the public that a dangerous suspect is believed to be in the area of Interstate 59 and Interstate 20. Dante Marquez Bender is wanted in connection to an officer-involved shooting in Meridian in Lauderdale County that occurred on June 9, 2022, at approximately 5:36 pm. Please take immediate precautions and notify 911 if you see Dante Marquez Bender or observe any suspicious activity. Dante Marquez Bender is described as black male 31 years of age, five feet eleven inches tall, weighing 299 pounds, with brown eyes and short black hair. He was last seen at 2408 51st Avenue in Meridian, MS, on June 9, 2022, at approximately 5:36 pm and was wearing a purple sweatshirt and purple sweatpants.
Dante Marquez Bender may be traveling in a 2004 black Nissan Armada traveling towards Newton County.
If you have any information on the whereabouts of this dangerous suspect, please call 9 1 1 or the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation at 855 642 5378.
** Original Information**
By Magnolia State Live
Officer Kennis Croom, along with an unidentified woman, died in a shooting at approximately 5:30 p.m. in the 2400 block of 51st Avenue in Meridian.
The Brookhaven Daily Leader reports that Croom was a former Brookhaven police officer.
Lauderdale County Sheriff Billy Sollie said law enforcement is searching for Dante Marquez Bender, 31, a former Newton Police officer who was fired in January.
Law enforcement officers in Meridian reported Bender had allegedly killed the woman on the scene and was allegedly about to kill four children as well when Officer Croom stopped him. Croom was fatally shot and Bender fled the scene.
Bender is believed to be driving a 2004 Black Nissan Armada with a tag reading “IMANI.” Bender may be armed and dangerous; if you see him or come in contact with him, please call 911.
If you have any information on Bender or know his whereabouts, please call 911 or 1-855-485-TIPS (8477) or send an email to MBITIPS@dps.ms.gov. All tips are anonymous.
MBI is currently assessing this critical incident and gathering evidence. Upon completing the investigation, agents will share their findings with the local District Attorney’s Office.