A Broadwater County Sheriff's deputy with only three years on the job and a wife and three children at home was shot and killed early Tuesday while trying to make a traffic stop.
He came from a small town in SC but made his mark in Big Sky Country. While living in SC he worked at the Clarendon County Sheriff's Office between 2007 and 2011 as a deputy and, later, as an investigator.
Moore is the 129th Montana law enforcement officer to die in the line of duty since 1878, just before Montana became a state.
The Broadwater County sheriff's office says 38-year-old Mason Moore had been a deputy for three years.
Close friends of Moore's say he was an incredible man who always did the best to be a helping hand in the community he served in.
Law enforcement agencies from across the state were involved in the chase. He is being held on a felony deliberate homicide charge in the Missoula County jail.
Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin said the incident began Tuesday morning when Moore was pursuing a white SUV near Three Forks shortly before 3 a.m. Before sunrise, the chase had ended with the vehicle driving on its rims, a suspect shot and hospitalized and his father under arrest, officials said.
The suspect vehicle was spotted near Anaconda.
Stevens says it's a brotherhood and sisterhood among deputies, and cascade county officials know Broadwater would provide equally as much support.
Several hours later, officers from numerous agencies joined a procession at mid-day Tuesday to transfer Moore's body from Three Forks to Billings for an autopsy.
The driver, who is the passenger's father, was identified as 61-year-old Lloyd Montier Barrus, according to KPAX. "During this week of remembrance, please do me a favor and smile and wave when you see a peace officer - we could use it!" His condition has not been released.
Gallatin County and Montana Highway Patrol officers responded and found the deputy dead by the side of the road near Three Forks, about 180 miles (289 kilometers) southeast of Missoula. Butte-Silver Bow officers continued to pursue the SUV westbound on I-90 through Deer Lodge County and Powell County and into Granite County.
Lester said at least one of the suspects fired at pursuing officers with at least one semi-automatic rifle.
Missoula County authorities report the passenger exited the vehicle and began shooting at multiple officers, according to KPAX. The passenger, who was identified as Marshall Barrus, 38, was shot in the head and taken to the hospital.