Today President Trump said that the suspect in the shooting of six policemen during the Philadelphia shootout should “never have been allowed to be on the streets.” They have identified the suspect to be 36-year-old male Maurice Hill, who has an extensive record of gun-related convictions and of attempting to avoid and escape arrest. He is now in custody, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
It was reported that two Narcotics Strike Force officers showed up to serve a warrant to a multifamily home. After they showed up is when all hell broke loose, and the standoff started. The suspect began firing, and six officers were shot, according to Richard Ross, Philadelphia Police Commissioner. The neighborhood where this occurred was not a good neighborhood, to begin with as a lot of civilians said it was no surprise it was happening. The area has a lot of drugs and violence, so this shootout that occurred was not a shock to many.
The two officers were barred in separate rooms with numerous hostages before being evacuated a little over five hours later. The standoff sparked Wednesday at approximately 4:30 p.m. and the suspect was finally arrested early Thursday morning. The suspect had an AR-15 rifle, and several handguns in his possession, and fired rounds up through the ceiling and out a window, officials told Fox News.
Officers took shelter behind cars and blocked off surrounding roads as they were fired at. Police returned fire, and just about every officer at the disturbance came under fire at some period.
SWAT team members were able to secure and remove the two trapped officers and others stealthily. The police don’t believe the criminal was aware of the plan that saved them, Ross said.
Thank God all six of the officers struck by bullets survived and only received medical treatment for minor injuries. Philadelphia Police Commissioner Ross said it was “nothing short of a miracle that we don’t have multiple officers killed today.” A team of four negotiators finally got to the suspect and tried to talk him down and get him out of the house with any more violence or issues occurring. Shaka Johnson the attorney that was part of the team of negotiators and also has been Hills attorney in the past said “I could sense that he was panicking and trying to figure out, ‘How do I get out of this situation alive?'”
Johnson arrived at the house and was provided body armor to wear as he approached the home with officers, so the suspect would know Johnson was there before surrendering. Johnson told him, ‘You’ve got to come out, man, and you have to put your phone down. You can’t come out with any weapons, you’ve got to put your hands up,'” and after that is when Hill was compliant with the instructions and surrendered. He was taken to the hospital after the incident due to the tear gas that the police fired in the room he was in.
After two prior mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, Trump summoned for Congress to take action. Primarily suggesting stronger background checks and red flag laws that could potentially keep threatening individuals from purchasing and obtaining firearms. Congress is currently on a summer recess, and Mitch McConnell, Rep. for Kentucky and Senate Majority Leader, resisted calls to bring senators back early. He did state, however, that these issues and measures may be on the agenda when they do return.
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