A Detroit police officer Monday shot a heavily-armed man who was leveling a gun at him while holed up in a west-side gas station, the city’s police chief said.
Investigators are trying to determine why the suspect, who was listed in serious condition, walked into the Citgo gas station on 8 Mile near Berg at 7:20 a.m., locked the door, “and started walking erratically back and forth, waving his gun around,” Detroit Police Chief James White said during a livestreamed press briefing near the crime scene.
White said the man’s pistol was equipped with an extended magazine, and that he had two other extended magazines with him.
“These are very unusual circumstances,” White said. “We don’t know if robbery was the motive or not. We’re still trying to figure all that out.”
As the man paced back and forth brandishing his pistol, the clerk dialed 911, White said. Another woman, a regular customer of the Citgo station, also called police after she appeared at the door, only to be shooed away by the suspect, White said.
“He waves her away with the weapon in his hand, then moves to back of store,” White said. “We don’t know what he was planning to do at that point.”
White said two officers arrived on the scene 8 to 10 minutes after the 911 calls were placed, and that they used “cover and concealment” tactics to approach the station on foot.
“It appears (the suspect) points the weapon at the officers, and you can hear the officers (on their body-worn cameras and Project Green Light video feeds) saying ‘drop the weapon, drop the weapon.'”
When the man did not comply, White said one of the officers, a seven-year veteran, fired “four or five shots.”
Per department policy with police-involved shootings, the officer will be placed on restricted duty pending the outcome of an investigation.
White said the suspect was taken to a nearby hospital. “It’s my understanding that he’s headed for surgery,” he said.
The man, whom White said was in his 30s, has a criminal record, “but nothing rising to the level of this,” he said.
There were no other injuries in the incident, White said.
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