Man Killed By Police in Alleged Running Gun Battle in South Philadelphia

Officers allegedly noticed a gun in the waistband of a bicyclist riding along a South Philly street, and a shootout ensued, police said.

Update: Police identified the shooter as Charles Meadows and said he fired first.

A man was shot and killed by police in South Philadelphia on Thursday morning in a hail of gunfire that also included numerous bullets through the front of a police cruiser, a police spokesman said.

The man, who police only identified as 48 years old, had been on a bike before the shooting. Two officers driving along the 1900 block of Woodstock Street allegedly noticed a gun in the waistband of the bicyclist.

"He’s riding a bicycle in the area and they see a bulge on his right side which is consistent with a firearm," police spokesman Capt. Sekou Kinebrew said. "They go to approach the male to stop him and engage him. ... At some point while fleeing on foot, I should mention, he discarded the bike."

"At 20th and Mercy streets, the male does stop and an exchange of gunfire between the male and the officer takes place," Kinebrew said. "We're not sure if that is the moment the male is struck because the male does get up and continues to run right to here, 20th and Snyder."

The large scene was cordoned off about 11 a.m. near the intersection of 20th Street and Snyder Avenue in the Girard Park section west of South Broad Street. At that location, a police cruiser could be seen parked with bullet holes through the front windshield.

Joseph Kaczmarek for NBC10
A Philadelphia police crime scene investigator holds a handgun allegedly used in a running gun battle between officers and a suspect, who later died, in South Philadelphia, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018.

Kinebrew said officers inside that vehicle also fired at the man, and it appears he fired back at them.

"He fired at the officers in that vehicle and they fired back out through the windshield," Kinebrew said. "We’re trying to determine now if the bullet holes you see in the windshield are from him firing at us, the police, or the police firing back at him."

Social video of a man who appeared to be shot showed officers picking him off the sidewalk on McKean Street and taking him away in a police cruiser to a hospital, a common practice in Philadelphia for shooting victims known as "scoop-and-run."

He died a short time later at a nearby hospital.

Police are on the scene where police officers have been involved in a shooting near 20th and McKean streets.
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