TOWSON, Md. (AP) — Heavily armed police swarmed into a suburban Baltimore community where a female officer was fatally injured Monday, searching for at least one armed suspect after witnesses reported hearing a pop and seeing the officer run over by a Jeep.
The witnesses described seeing the badly injured officer on the ground as several residents tried to keep her alive, but she was subsequently declared dead at a hospital.
Tony Kurek told The Associated Press his adult son was outside in the family’s yard Monday afternoon in the northeast Baltimore County community of Perry Hall when the son saw the officer with her gun drawn, confronting the occupants of a Jeep.
“The next thing he heard was a pop, and he saw the Jeep take off and run right over her,” Kurek said.
Logan Kurek, who is a volunteer firefighter, said he heard his younger brother “frantically screaming” and ran outside to perform CPR.
The officer was responding to a call about a suspicious vehicle when she encountered at least one suspect and was “critically injured,” police spokesman Cpl. Shawn Vinson said. Neighbors called authorities and tried to save her, but she was pronounced dead upon arrival at a hospital, Vinson said.
“What exactly happened we are not sure yet until an autopsy is performed,” Vinson said at a press conference Monday. He said he had no immediate information about her fatal injuries, or whether she had fired her own weapon.
Kurek’s neighbor, Dahle Amendt, said he had just settled into his recliner for a rest when he heard a woman’s voice outside his house.
“I heard, ‘Get out of the car!’ ‘Get out of the car!’ Get out of the car!’ at least three times, and then a pop,” Amendt said.
Amendt said his wife also ran outside and tried to revive the officer, to no avail.
“This is a shock. It’s a quiet community. It’s just so sad,” Amendt said.
Vinson said the family of the officer, who would have been a four-year veteran in July, has been notified, but police didn’t immediately identify her.
Authorities were advising motorists to avoid the area and residents to shelter in place while the hunt for the suspect or suspects continued. Students at several local elementary schools were not being dismissed but were instead being held over on alert status, and their parents were told to await further instructions.
Police from several agencies backed by federal law enforcement are widely searching the area for at least one armed suspect, police said.
At a gas station located at a cordoned-off intersection in Perry Hall, some residents gathered to watch three helicopters of TV news crews buzzing over the neighborhood. An unmarked car with law enforcers, including one officer cradling a rifle in the back seat, drove past and was waved through by police manning the intersection.
Heavily armed officers with a trained canine also could be seen walking through backyards amid the search. A pair of officers elsewhere, with guns drawn, entered a home’s front door as they scoured the neighborhood.
“The cop cars just keep coming. It’s pretty scary,” said Sukvir Singh, an employee of the gas station.
Associated Press writers Denise Lavoie and Sarah Rankin in Richmond, Virginia, contributed to this report.
This article provided by NewsEdge.