Police commissioner goes on a tear after officer shot while sitting in cruiser in Baltimore: ‘This violence needs to stop’

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BALTIMORE, MD – The police commissioner has dropped the mic: 

This violence needs to stop.”

At 9:40 a.m., in broad daylight, two officers were shot at while sitting in their police vehicle. 

Officers in civilian clothes were working with the Baltimore Police Department’s Warrant Apprehension Task Force and were surveilling a home when a man drove his vehicle up next to their unmarked vehicle and opened fire. 

One of the officers was struck.

Police Commissioner Michael Harrison gave a statement on the incident during a press conference:

“The man, who has not yet been identified pulled alongside the officers’ unmarked car, facing in the opposite direction, got out from his the drivers’ side, and then opened fire into our officers’ surveillance vehicle, striking one of our officers in the upper thigh…and our officer returned fire while sitting inside of the vehicle, striking the suspect at least more than once.”

Officers on the scene gave medical aid to the shooter until emergency medical personnel arrive.  The unidentified man died shortly after arriving at a local hospital.  The wounded officer was hospitalized and is listed in good condition.

Police commissioner goes on a tear after officer shot while sitting in cruiser in Baltimore: 'This violence needs to stop'
Screenshot courtesy of Fox Baltimore

Commissioner Harrison had strong words about the shooting:

“I think the message is clear: this violence has to stop. 

“But the members of our police department are proactive and were where they were supposed to be, doing what they were supposed to do – actually looking for a violent offender to arrest, and were attacked by a suspect who is now dead as a result of his actions.”

Baltimore officers have been under fire frequently.  Violent crime is on the rise, and numerous shootings with injuries and fatalities have plagued the city.

In June, an officer was shot when several officers responded to a disturbance surrounding a parking lot party. 

Officers were attempting to disperse a large crowd in a parking lot.  They received several calls about the gathering just after 3 a.m. and observed a sport utility vehicle speeding into the parking lot.  The officers confronted the driver of the SUV and discovered he was armed. 

The officer was shot once in his mid-section during a struggle to arrest the man.   

The Fraternal Order of Police reported that the officer underwent surgery and was listed in stable condition.

Commissioner Harrison held a press conference reporting they had a suspect in custody:

“Even though our officer was shot – the two of them were still able to subdue this subject and take him into custody. 

“During very tough tumultuous times, in spite of all that’s going on everywhere in the country, the members of the Baltimore Police Department, continue to serve and continue to protect and continue to do what is necessary to keep the people of Baltimore safe.”

Mayor Jack Brown urged citizens to put guns down and handle differences some other way.  Harrison responded more directly, indicating that his department will continue to address “the culture of violence” in Baltimore:

“The shooting is an actual disregard for human life and disregard for authority and disregard for law enforcement — the actual people who are out there working to keep people safe.

“The decision to pull the trigger is not made when the trigger is pulled, it’s made when a person walks out of the door with a gun, so it is about the illegal carrying of guns and the willingness to use those guns, even against law enforcement. 

“So it has to be about those violent offenders, who we are working very hard to get off the street and keep off of the streets of Baltimore…” 

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Two Baltimore men arrested, charged with shooting security guard who was covering ballot box

November 4, 2020

 

BALTIMORE, MD Two men have been arrested and charged for the mid-October shooting of a security guard who was covering a ballot box location. 

The unarmed security guard was on site Oct. 15 to watch over a ballot box used for absentee and early voting in Northeast Baltimore. The shooting appeared to be motivated by robbery and not election interference.

When officers arrived at the location, they found the 24-year-old man suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. The guard survived the shooting but his wounds were significant, authorities said.

Baltimore Police Department Northeast Division detectives investigated the shooting, and as a result, arrest warrants were issued for Christopher Winchester, 24, and Jamal Simmons, 27. Both men, arrested Oct. 26, were charged with attempted first-degree murder and firearm use by a felon in a violent crime as well as other weapons charges.

Jayne Miller of WBAK in Baltimore reported on the shooting and initial investigation:

“Investigators believe that the non-fatal shooting incident that occurred this morning at 4:55 a.m. in the 2200 block of Pinewood Avenue may have been an attempted robbery.  The victim was working a midnight to eight shift for a security company as an unarmed guard tasked with keeping watch over an election ballot box.

“After looking at video surveillance footage of the parking lot, detectives learned that armed suspects approached the victim’s vehicle and tried to open the car door.  The victim refused and the suspects began shooting at the victim. 

The ballot box was untouched and did not appear at any time to be the focus of the gunmen.”

In other crime news out of Baltimore, 15 people were shot this past week, four fatally. 

On Friday night alone, police were called to Northeast Baltimore’s Darley Park neighborhood and found a 17-year-old boy who had been shot. Police said he was taken to the hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening. 

Shortly after that, two men were injured in another shooting. Officers were called to the Brooklyn neighborhood of South Baltimore and found a 31-year-old man who had been shot.

Another man, 27, walked into an area hospital with gunshot wounds and police determined he was a second victim from the same shooting. 

Just before 10 p.m., a 28-year-old man was shot in South Baltimore’s Curtis Bay neighborhood.  He was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. At about 10 p.m., a 27-year-old man walked into a hospital with a gunshot wound to his arm. 

Just after 11 p.m., officers on the York Road corridor heard gunfire.  They found a man suffering from several gunshot wounds.  He was pronounced dead at the scene.

On Saturday morning just after 4 a.m., officers responded to the Gay Street neighborhood where a woman had been shot in the leg.

Early Saturday afternoon, Southern District officers responded to the Carrollton Ridge neighborhood where they found a 29-year-old man who had been shot in the head.  He was taken to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center where he was pronounced dead.

Officers responded mid-afternoon to a hospital over a call involving a walk-in shooting victim.  A 23-year-old man had been shot in the upper body and was being treated.

Three shootings were reported between 4:40 and 5:40 a.m. Sunday. At 4:40 a.m., a 20-year-old man was treated for a single gunshot wound to the body.  At 5:30 a.m., police responded to an area in Northeast Baltimore where a man received several gunshot wounds to his arm.  At 5:40 a.m., officers responded to a hospital in the Coppin Heights area where a man was being treated for multiple gunshot wounds.

Two more shootings, including a fatal shooting, were reported Sunday afternoon.

Baltimore Mayor Bernard C. Young recently released a statement that applies to the current violence seen in the city:

“We can never get to a place where this type of bloodshed becomes normal. All of Baltimore stands committed to eliminating these horrific acts of violence.

“I beg anyone who might have information about these latest shootings to please reach out to the police. We must work together to end senseless shootings in our city. I’m also asking all of Baltimore to continue to pray for the victims and their friends and families.”

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