WOODLAWN, Md. (WJZ) — Two Baltimore Officers assigned to the U.S. Marshals Warrant Apprehension Task Force were injured and a suspect was fatally shot in a shooting at Security Square Mall in Woodlawn Tuesday morning.

Baltimore County Police said officers responded shortly after 8 a.m. to the mall. There, they found the injured officers suffering from gunshot wounds. They were transported to shock trauma with non-life-threatening injuries.

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Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said the officers were looking for the suspect in a homicide. The suspect was identified as 32-year-old Justin Powell of Baltimore, who was wanted on a murder and handgun warrant.

Powell was suspected in a homicide that took place June 19 on the 1000 block of W. Lanvale Street.

Harrison said the officers were looking for the suspect’s car when they found the suspect with the car in the mall parking lot. Harrison said when the officers approached, the suspect opened fire.

Multiple officers reportedly returned fire at the suspect. He was transported to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Dr. Scalea of the Shock Trauma Center said the officers arrived in serious condition but both were stabilized. Both will need therapy but are expected to survive.

“What we saw today was exactly what officers go through these are the most dangerous situations imaginable,” said Harrison. “But they did their job with bravery, with courage and with professionalism.”

“Building a safer Baltimore requires us to hold violent offenders accountable,” said Scott. “Today these officers were doing just that, trying to apprehend someone for a murder committed less than a month ago on the streets of Baltimore.”

Baltimore County Police is the lead investigative agency in this incident.

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Investigative Reporter Mike Hellgren is on the scene. He said investigators seemed to be focused on one particular vehicle outside the mall.

Chopper footage shows a heavy police presence in the parking lot of the mall Tuesday morning, where a multiple-car collision is shown. Bullet holes are visible in the window of one SUV. It is unclear what the circumstances of the shooting were.

“We are praying for the speedy recovery of the two Baltimore City police officers who were shot this morning while pursuing a homicide suspect,” said Governor Larry Hogan in a tweet. “The Maryland State Police has offered its full support for the investigation.”

The Baltimore County Fire Department said it is assisting police.

A statement from Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Jonathan F. Lenzner:

“On behalf of the United States Attorney’s Office, I would like to recognize the bravery and selfless commitment to public service of the Baltimore police officers assigned to the U.S. Marshal Service Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force who were shot and injured today in the line of duty. Today is a painful reminder of the dangers that law enforcement face every day in performing their duties to keep our communities safe. As reflected in their actions today, these two officers and their colleagues are dedicated to making communities in Baltimore safer, and they deserve our gratitude and appreciation.”

 

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CBS Baltimore Staff