Gunfire Erupts When Officers Investigate Burglary, Suspect Dies

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Jesse Gary explains what led to a Philadelphia Police officer opening fire in the city's Northwood section. (Published Friday, Aug 1, 2014)

    A Philadelphia Police officer opened fire after a woman inside a home signaled that everything wasn’t OK when the officer investigated a burglary report in the city’s Northwood section.

    Two 15th District officers responded to a tripped security alarm at a home on the 900 block of Wakeling Street around 12:30 a.m. Friday.

    When they knocked on the door a man answered and told them everything was OK with him, the other man in the home and a woman in the home. Since the man wasn’t the homeowner, the officers asked to speak to a female resident who said everything was OK but signaled to the officers that that wasn’t the case.

    Investigators said that the man then pointed a gun at the officer’s head.

    “The officer, in a defensive mood, put his left hand up basically pulled out a gun,” said Capt. George Fuchs.

    The suspect shot three times, said investigators.

    “Thank God the officer was not struck,” said Fuchs.

    The officer, a six-year veteran, returned fire, discharging more than one dozen rounds. It wasn't clear if the officer's partner also opened fire.

    The suspect was hit and died. His alleged accomplice got away. The manhunt continued through the morning.

    Investigators hoped a car recovered at the scene will help lead to the second suspect.

    This was the tenth time this year and second time this week that a Philadelphia officer opened fire while in the line of duty.

    Police said that an initial investigation into Friday's incident showed that the woman and a man were forced into their home by two masked men. Once inside those men removed their masks and demanded money -- that was when the police responded to a tripped alarm.

    Neighbors, including fellow Philly officers, said that burglars have recently targeted the neighborhood.