Another police officer shot in the US

  • 10/07/2016
(James T. McConatha / Twitter)
(James T. McConatha / Twitter)

A police officer has been shot in east Alabama in the United States, with the assailant later shot and killed by law enforcement.

The suspect, believed to be aged 77 years old, allegedly set his son's front yard, house and car on fire, and killed his son's dog.

He then took a hostage into a campervan before a standoff. Reports say the man was armed with a rifle and a handgun.

Local media are reporting that the hostage was the assailant's wife, and she is now safe.

Helfin city police posted to facebook, asking followers to pray for the officers assisting to stop the "madness".

This comes after a string of incidents across the United States involving the shootings of African-American civilians, and police officers.

US President Barack Obama spoke in an attempt to ease tensions just hours before this latest attack, and said the US is "not as divided as some have suggested".

"The demented individual who carried out those attacks in Dallas, he's no more representative of African-Americans than the shooter in Charleston was representative of white Americans or the shooter in Orlando or San Bernardino were representative of Muslim-Americans," Mr Obama said, referring to mass shootings earlier in the past year.