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Ferguson police officer shot in the arm; off-duty cop also comes under fire

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(CNN) — A police officer patrolling in Ferguson, Missouri, was shot in the arm late Saturday, police said. His wound is not life-threatening, and he was taken to a local hospital.

There’s no reason to believe the shooting was connected with demonstrations over the August police shooting of unarmed African-American teen Michael Brown, authorities said.

“It didn’t happen within the proximity of the protest area,” said St. Louis County Police Chief Col. Jon Belmar. The shooting scene was in a more secluded area.

“I wouldn’t have any reason to believe right now that it was linked in any way, shape, manner or form with the protests,” he said.

Still, the shooting stoked emotions among protesters who were on the street demonstrating over Brown’s death.

“All the hate’s got to stop,” Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson told a group of demonstrators after the shooting.

He also said some people who took part in protests over Brown’s shooting have threatened to kill a police officer.

Foot pursuit

The officer shot was patrolling alone in his police cruiser when he conducted a “business check” at the Ferguson Community Center, St. Louis County Police said in a statement.

He saw a “male subject” at the rear of the building. When the officer got out of his car to question him, the man ran, and the officer gave chase.

Then the man spun around with a handgun and “fired shots at the officer,” the statement read. One struck the officer in the left arm.

The officer shot back, police said, but there was no indication that he hit the suspect, who ducked into a wooded area, eluding the officer.

Police from neighboring areas joined Ferguson police to search for the suspect for more than an hour but could not find him. He is still at large.

In the aftermath of the shooting, county police officials gave differing accounts of what led up to it, saying at one point that it involved two suspects who spontaneously ran from the officer’s squad car.

Belmar told reporters the officer was very close to two suspects when one turned on him with a gun. He said the officer blocked the gun with his arm and then was shot.

Police later said the account of two suspects was incorrect.

The wounded officer is able to speak and told colleagues about the incident, police said.

Separate shooting

In a separate incident hours later, gunmen fired at a car driven by an off-duty St. Louis city police officer on an interstate highway. The officer was in his private vehicle and was not wearing a uniform shirt at the time.

The gunmen passed the officer on the left and shot his vehicle multiple times with handguns, police said in a statement.

The gunfire did not appear to hit the officer, who suffered minor scratches from breaking glass.

“It is unclear at this time if the officer was targeted or if this was a random act of violence,” county police said in a statement.

The officer did not return fire.

Heated Ferguson responses

Some people were quick to connect the officer’s shooting with the tensions that have beset Ferguson since Brown was killed August 9.

“Cops are creating an excuse,” one Twitter user posted. “Can’t tell me differently.”

Others blamed people on the streets.

“Ferguson. YOU have a problem,” one wrote.

“It’s unbelievable that town is still this out of control,” posted another.

Michael Brown protests

Demonstrators have taken to the streets of Ferguson since Brown was shot by white Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson.

Despite demands by protesters, Wilson has not been charged in the case, though a grand jury is hearing evidence that could lead to an indictment.

Tensions reignited in the St. Louis suburb on Thursday night after Police Chief Thomas Jackson addressed a crowd of demonstrators. A scuffle ensued, and arrests were made.

Wading into the crowd, Jackson apologized for his department’s actions after the shooting, but pledged not to resign. “I’m sorry, and I said that from my heart,” he said. “I had to get that off my chest. It’s been sitting there for two months.”

“If you are not resigning tonight, go home,” one man said on a bullhorn.

Brown’s shooting stirred complaints of widespread racial profiling in Ferguson, which Jackson rejected Thursday.

“It’s never been the intention of the Ferguson Police Department — or any police department that I know — to intentionally target individuals because of race,” said the chief. “If there is that happening, it’s a crime and it needs to be addressed.”

21 comments

  • dancing in the ruins

    amanda wins Dumbest Comment In The History Of The Internet. too bad they let MPS 4 grade flunkies on the internet.

  • BigPoppa

    The cops should execute 10 Ferguson residents from where this officer was gunned down. That’s the only language these inner city thugs understand. That would stop all if this Ferguson nonsense.

    • sick of everyone's judgment

      Who died and made you God to pass judgement on a stereotype? That’s not what the hell they understand. When a person of your culture or race gets killed by a cop for a unjustified reason, you guys want answers just like anybody else. People react different in situations looking for answers. Bet if it was a black cop that shot a white kid y’all would be asking for the same results for an answer. I’m sick of all the racial slander that people keep saying. All this would be same reaction from any other race. So while you trying to pass judgment think about the same situation happening to you. No matter what race everyone will react the same just on different levels. We all would expect answers.

      • Mike Johnson

        expecting answers is different than shooting cops rioting looting burning a city and protesting in the streets. whites have better things to do like work to support the welfare system so these people can still get their foodstamps while they riot

      • sick of everyone's judgment

        Really Mike Johnson, news flash white people are the same ones on the system. The reason they did what they did was their reason not yours but I bet if you sat there and watched your own being shot by a cop you would just sit there and peaceful wait for answers? I don’t think you would. Let me point out something, media tells and taints the news for media ratings. Two we don’t live in the city it took place so we don’t know the whole story. On top of that we was not the when they took place. Again a stereotypical view. That’s just like me saying to you oh white people are nothing but child molesters right?

  • diane

    that sure helps the cause..if the officers preceive a threat why shouldn’t they protect themselves and the public, more than likely exactly what the officer did when the young person was shot, remember he just robbed a store and roughed up the shop keeper, he wasn’t a young incocent person, he also was breaking the law by walking down the middle of the street. so now the general public thinks they can just gun down officers…anyone that thinks so is a thug themselves..people want the police to protect them but then don’t want them to do their job.. make up your minds..

  • just an old person

    Also, developers had a plan to help the area that was impacted by riots, looting et al BEFORE this “mess” now would you put your $$$’s? Maybe Rev Al can invest! Still think blu flu due – no cooperation from community. Even great guy from highway paytrol beginning to look worn down & disgusted.

  • just an old person

    So cops should continue to put their arse’s on line while not having any help from the community! Get real. Sharpton & Mike Brown’s family are looking for $$$$$$. Case closed. This should be fought &NOT settled. Time to draw the line. So sorry we lost Malcom X who was beginning to see the light! Guess that is why he was murdered by the “community” – you think!

    • cityres

      The cops don’t have to put their arse’s on the line. They aren’t drafted. They choose this job. If you can’t take the heat get out the kitchen. Nobody asked them to come from wherever they came to police a community they know nothing about besides the new or tv or music. I’m pretty sure lots of Ferguson residents applied to be officers but military credits and the good ole boy network are tough obstacles to get past.

  • buttcrunchfever

    the police there should just hunker down and go on strike, to hell with ferguson and the worthless mooks that are burning it into the ground…

  • Semper Fidelis, USMC

    Wow, being a officer in that town is scary……..just as the media is, ouchie. raaaaaacist against thugs YES I am.

Comments are closed.

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