BALTIMORE (AP/WJZ)–A Baltimore police officer was shot after stopping a man on a bicycle during a sweep of a neighborhood known for violent crime.
Weijia Jiang has more on the officer’s condition and reaction from city leaders.
Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld said three city detectives were patrolling in an unmarked police car about 7:30 p.m. Friday when they spotted a man on a bicycle on Harford Road and became suspicious that he might be armed. After asking the man to stop, one officer exited the passenger side of the vehicle and closed the car door.
“When he turned back toward the suspect, the suspect was armed with a silver-colored .32-caliber revolver and opened fire,” Bealefeld said.
The gunfire broke out at the corner of 25th Street and Harford Road in East Baltimore. A 30-year-old, six-year veteran of the city police department was shot. That officer, Detective Michael Rice, underwent emergency surgery Monday night.
“We believe the first round of fire struck our detective in the left side of his neck. The bullet lodged in his right lung,” said Bealefeld.
Bealefeld says he was one of three detectives detailing the area, which has seen a recent spike in violence.
“But I’ve seen them. I can tell you they had soft body armor on that says in very bright white bold letters ‘Police’ across their body armor. They also had badges,” Bealefeld said.
Reports over the police scanner reveal the injured officer was transported to Shock Trauma in a patrol car before medics had time to arrive to the scene.
Several streets in East Baltimore were shut down to create a path to the hospital.
“The detective is in unbelievably good spirits,” said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.”Told his parents who are here they raised a tough son. He’s alert, he’s talking. His family is here.”
Police say the suspect was carrying a false ID card so they’re still trying to pinpoint who he is. They say he’s in critical condition at Johns Hopkins.
Police found the suspect’s gun at the scene. The investigation is ongoing.