ILLINOIS (WEHT) – Despite having just lost a sheriff’s deputy, Illinois faces a new loss.

Bradley Police Department Sergeant Marlene Rittmanic was killed while responding to a barking dog complaint Wednesday evening and her partner, Officer Tyler Bailey, was critically wounded. This comes after Wayne County Sheriff’s Deputy Sean Riley was killed during a motorist assist call the previous morning. Illinois Fraternal Order of Police State Lodge President Chris Southwood issued the following statement regarding the on-duty shooting deaths on December 29 of two Illinois police officers:

“In less than 24 hours we have lost two of the state’s finest public servants, both dedicated officers whose murders are a senseless, reprehensible stain on humanity during what should be a season of peace. To be shot to death while helping a stranded motorist or gunned down while trying to quiet a barking dog is further evidence that more criminals are becoming emboldened by the continuing false narrative that police officers are the bad guys. When is it going to stop? How many more officers’ families will be left to grieve while the real bad guys continue to slaughter those in uniform? As we enter a new year we urge all Illinoisans to grieve alongside these officers’ families, and to let all who will listen know that we will no longer tolerate an environment where wearing a badge makes you a target.”

For more information on The Illinois Fraternal Order of Police, please go here.