A Philadelphia police officer was shot and critically wounded during a vehicle investigation, and two suspects were being sought, authorities said Wednesday.
Officials said the officer was shot at least twice shortly after 3:30 p.m. Wednesday in West Philadelphia and was taken to a hospital in critical condition.
First Deputy Commissioner John Stanford said one officer had approached the passenger side of a vehicle and a struggle ensued with a passenger who opened fire, hitting the officer in the abdomen just under his vest.
Police said another officer returned fire and both suspects fled. The other officer transported his partner to Penn Presbyterian Medical Center.
Stanford said one bullet appeared to have gone in and exited, and medical personnel were trying to determine what kind of damage may have been done by the second bullet.
Stanford said the 32-year-old officer who was wounded has been on the force for five years. Police said no description of the suspects was immediately available but officials were checking body-worn camera video. Officials believed they had located the vehicle involved but were working to confirm that.
Stanford asked anyone with information to call investigators, saying, “The fact that you would shoot at a police officer that’s doing their jobs, you have no regard for life,” he said. “We’re trying to get these people in custody as quickly as possible.”
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney called policing “a very dangerous and difficult job done by very brave people.”
“They go out every day to try to keep us safe, and put their lives in harm’s way and their health in harm’s way, and we can’t really repay them for doing that kind of work,” Kenney said.
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