Another police officer, this time in west St. Louis County, MO, was shot shortly before 11 a.m. this morning near the 300 block of New Ballwin Road in Ballwin, MO.
Sources tell us a Ballwin officer was shot in neck during traffic stop. Suspect in custody after foot chase. Story TK @stltoday
— Christine Byers (@ChristineDByers) July 8, 2016
Authorities say the Ballwin Police Department Officer had stopped a man in a blue Ford Taurus with Illinois temporary tags for speeding. As the officer walked back to his vehicle, the driver got out, “advanced quickly” and fired three shots at the officer.
In a press conference this afternoon, St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar stated, “Make no mistake, we believe that Ballwin officer was ambushed.”
The officer was transported to Mercy Hospital where Ballwin Chief Kevin Scott says he is in critical but stable condition, “fighting for his life.”
Police presence growing outside Mercy Hospital emergency room after reports a police officer was shot in Ballwin, MO pic.twitter.com/su3ruIIZr4
— Mike Colombo (@Mike_Colombo) July 8, 2016
Police have confirmed the suspect, described as a tall, thin African-American male wearing a gray tee-shirt and blue jeans, was apprehended after giving officers a short foot chase. Officers did find and recover a semiautomatic handgun from the suspect.
Authorities are not releasing the name of the suspect at this time, but they have said he is a 31-year-old man with a weapons violation out of St. Louis, for which he was put on probation. The suspect was also given probation for a stolen vehicle charge in Oklahoma in 2011. In March 2015, he was picked up as a felon in possession of a firearm in California and paroled.
Ballwin Alderman Raymond Kerlogan, of Ward 4, said the police officer had just taken him for a ride-along on Tuesday.
“I spent about four hours with him,” Kerlogan said. “Just watching him, how cautious he was.”
Kerlogan said he remained in the police car when the officer stopped someone and ran the person’s drivers license. He recalled the officer being “very conscious” of safety when approaching the vehicle.
The Alderman referred to the officer “caring” and a “great guy.”