Slain Officer Was Newlywed, Expecting 1st Child

The Philadelphia Police Department is mourning once again. 

Officer John Pawlowski of the 35th district was shot and killed Friday, February 13th, by a man police say was carrying out a threat he'd made minutes earlier to kill a cop.

It happened right after 8 p.m. Friday at the intersection of Broad and Olney.

The suspect is 33-year-old Rasheed Scrugs of Philadelphia. He is in critical condition at the hospital after getting shot by police who returned gunfire. On Saturday, investigators said Scrugs has a criminal record.

In this video you'll hear more about the investigation, the makeshift memorial at the shooting scene and how fellow officers at the 35th District remember Pawlowski.

Pawlowski and his partner rolled up on the scene of an argument between a hack cab driver and another man. Earlier, when the cab driver told the other man he was calling police, he says the man threatened him saying if he did that, “I will shoot you and the police.”

Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said as Officer Pawlowski and his partner walked toward the man, he shot once through his coat and then continued to fire, hitting Pawlowski several times and grazing Pawlowski's partner.  

Authorities say Pawlowski had been wearing a bullet proof vest, according to reports by the Associated Press.

25-year old Pawlowski, a newlywed expecting his first child, died at Einstein Medical Center. 

The suspect was wounded when Pawlowski’s partner and another officer returned fire. He was listed in critical condition.

Police recovered the murder weapon and found what they believe is crack-cocaine in the suspect’s pocket, according to Ramsey.

Mayor Nutter, in a late-night news conference, asked people to pray for the officer’s wife, Kim, who is two months pregnant. Nutter said that he’s very, very angry and that it was a sad night for the city.

“It is beyond words to explain what it’s like when these incidents take place,” he said. “To be in the room when the wife, the parents, the family cries out in pain, ‘How many times will this have to happen before people do what is right?’” Nutter said.

Commissioner Ramsey said Officer Pawlowski, a 5-year veteran of the force, had followed in his father’s footsteps. His dad retired recently from the Philadelphia Police Department. Ramsey said the fallen officer’s brother worked in police radio and that when the call came out Friday night, he left and came to the scene.

Ramsey said in the 40 years that he’s been in law enforcement, he’s never seen so many officers killed in such a short period of time.

Officer John Pawlowski was from the same district as Officer Chuck Cassidy. Cassidy was shot and killed when he walked in on a robbery at a Dunkin Donuts. That happened less than a mile from where Pawlowski was gunned down.

Pawlowski is also survived by three brothers, a sister and his father.

Details for Officer Pawlowski's funeral were released Sunday afternoon. A memorial mass will be held Monday evening at the officer's church. A life celebration and viewing will be held on Thursday at the Givnich Funeral Home. A funeral mass and burial will follow on Friday. For complete details on the funeral arrangements, click here.

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