A Philadelphia cop shooting took place late Friday, leaving at least two people dead, including the shooter, according to local source Philly Voice.
The rampage happened on the corner of 52nd and Samson a little after 11 p.m. local time. Sergeant Sylvia Young was sitting in her police cruiser when the gunman fired off 15 shots into her. Eight bullets struck the policewoman in her left arm and bulletproof vest.
The Philadelphia cop shooting continued as the shooter, who has yet to be identified, shot into the Samson street bar, Maximum Level Lounge, wounding an on-duty security guard in the leg. He then tried to use an innocent bystander, a woman, to ward off bullets shot by pursuing cops, proceeded to use his own firearm to shoot the woman in the leg, and again took off.
The shooter moved over to 49th street, where he decided to shoot at a passing motor vehicle. He hit two passengers in the chest, a male and female. The female has succumbed to her injuries and passed away, and reports indicate the male is currently in critical condition.
The Philadelphia cop shooting came to an end, when the gunman, traveling towards 48th street, began firing shots indiscriminately at the multiple police who had responded to the first shot. Officer Eddie Miller, a University of Pennsylvania cop, pursued the shooter and managed to take him out in the midst of the exchange that followed. Miller was injured but is currently in stable condition according to Philadelphia mayor Jim Kenney.
Kenney also reported that the first officer shot, Young, is also in stable condition. Both officers are being treated at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center.
According to Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross, the police do not, at this time, know the identity of the gunman. Except for a note that was left by the now deceased assailant, Ross says a clear motive for the shooting has not yet been established.
“The gunman left a note saying he hated cops and probation officers. Philadelphia police are now riding patrols in pairs.”
According to the NY Daily News, the note, which was found nearby to where the gunman started his rampage, called out a specific parole officer.
“The twisted letter allegedly contained rambling anti-police rhetoric and even named a parole officer as a specific target.”
Ross said that the gunman did not communicate verbally to the police or innocent bystanders as he carried out the shootings.
Mayor Kenney sent out a heartfelt plea to Philadelphia police, requesting that they take after Officer Young and always wear their bulletproof vests while out on patrol. The fact that Young was wearing hers no doubt saved her life.
The Philidelphia cop shooting marks the second shooting of 2016 in which a cop from Ross’s force was specifically targeted.
Officer Jesse Hartnett was, like Young, sitting in his cruiser on January 8 when a gunman, seemingly out of nowhere began firing shots at him.
It happened in Philadelphia’s 18th Police District, on the corner of 60th street and Spruce. The shooter, Edward Archer, shot thirteen bullets at Hartnett, four of which struck him in his left arm. Luckily, the shots proved not to be fatal, as Hartnett has recovered. Archer is currently in prison and, as reported by a local Philly CBS News source, will begin the trial f0r his crimes on October 21.
In Hartnett’s case, the shooter’s motive was, according to the gunman himself, religious in nature. Philly, during the aftermath of the shooting, reported that Archer admitted to authorities that he committed his crime in the name of Islam.
“‘I follow Allah. I pledge my allegiance to the Islamic State, and that’s why I did what I did,’ Archer told detectives, according to Homicide Capt. James Clark.”
Archer had previously traveled to places in the Middle East prior to shooting Officer Hartnett. He partook in a weeks-long journey to Mecca, Saudi Arabia in 2011, and in 2012 he spent a good chunk of the year in Egypt for unknown reasons.
The Philidelphia cop shooting on Friday looks like it could be, according to the note left by the shooter, a continuance of the anti-cop movement that has gained momentum recently in response to fatal shootings of black men and women by police. Hopefully, authorities will find answers quickly and move to take action to prevent this kind of baseless violence from occurring in the future.
[Featured Image by Carl Ballou/Shuttershock]