BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Residents in a one northeast Baltimore neighborhood were stunned Wednesday afternoon after they heard what they thought was an explosion. But, it turned out to be rounds of gunfire as two police officers on a federal task force confronted a suspect wanted in an attempted murder.
The officers, one from Baltimore city and one from Baltimore County, were trying to serve a felony warrant to a suspect, a former state corrections official, when shots were fired, killing the suspect and striking the officers. The incident happened right around noon at the Garden Village Apartments in the 5900 block of Radecke Avenue.
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One man told WJZ’s Paul Gessler that his wife and their 2-year-old child were inside their apartment at the time of the shooting and his wife described it as a “bomb going off.” She grabbed her toddler and went to find a safe location inside her apartment.
WJZ’s Mike Hellgren spoke to an eyewitness who heard some 15 shots and then saw an almost immediate police response arrive to the scene.
Another witness, Marcus, told Hellgren that he was walking down the street when he heard a bunch of gunshots — at least 10.
Marcus said the police response was almost immediate, and while he didn’t see anything, he said it was “very loud and very disturbing.”
“I just think the situation in Baltimore is that a lot of people are bored. They’re closing down the rec centers, they’re closing down the schools. They’re pushing a lot of youth out into the street and some of the guys, even as old as I am — I’m 34 years old — don’t have anything to do either.” Marcus said. “There’s no guidance in the city, even as far as the officials. I just think if we would steer the youth in a direction and give them more opportunities — like me and my wife — opportunities to play football … I just think the city would be in a better place.”
Tracy Hankins, another eyewitness, said the scene was chaos.
“One of the officers got shot, he went down, and of course I seen a suspect, he was shot up to,” Hankins said. “Then another officer got shot in the leg, and he picked the other officer up and put him in a pickup truck. The other guy came in an ambulance and they picked him up and put him in an ambulance. The other officer got shot in the leg I believe. It’s chaos, it’s crazy.”
City council president Brandon Scott said the incident happened minutes from his home.
“At Shock Trauma waiting on updates about the officers shot at Radecke & Cedonia, minutes from my home. My prayers go out to our brave Baltimore City and County officers as well as the whole community who is undoubtedly shaken by this incident. Will share details as we learn more,” Scott tweeted.
At Shock Trauma waiting on updates about the officers shot at Radecke & Cedonia, minutes from my home. My prayers go out to our brave Baltimore City and County officers as well as the whole community who is undoubtedly shaken by this incident. Will share details as we learn more.
— Brandon M. Scott (@CouncilPresBMS) February 12, 2020
The officers were taken to Shock Trauma for treatment. The officer shot in the leg was in “good spirits” Wednesday afternoon, while another officer, who was shot multiple times in the stomach, was in serious, but stable condition. Doctors said that officer is alive because of tourniquet applied by fellow officers. The officer needed emergency surgery.
Mount Pleasant Church opened its space as a sanctuary to anyone impacted by the incident.
Police continue to investigate the shooting.
Stay with WJZ for the latest on this story.