One person was killed and a juvenile injured in an officer-involved shooting in St. Louis, one of two such shootings Tuesday.
Acting St. Louis Police Commissioner Laurence O’Toole confirmed that two officers were on a routine patrol on East College Street at about 12:20 p.m. when a Hyundai pulled out in front of them, spun out and hit a curb. Four people got out of the car, O’Toole said, and the officers got out of their car as well.
“One of the individuals in the car pointed a Glock handgun with an extended magazine at the officers,” O’Toole said.
The officers then opened fire, striking the man with the gun and a juvenile standing next to him, he said. The other two ran off and were still at large.
The two who were shot were taken to an area hospital. The adult was pronounced dead, and his identity wasn’t immediately released. The 14-year-old juvenile was in stable condition, and his mother was with him, O’Toole said.
The car they were driving was stolen in a carjacking Monday, O’Toole said, but that information was not known to police at the time of the shooting.
The officers’ identities were not released, but one was 30 years old with two and a half years of service, and the other was 29 years old with four years of service, O’Toole said. Both were placed on administrative leave as is department policy.
O’Toole said he did not know whether drugs or alcohol were involved, and said the investigation into both the shooting and the prior carjacking was continuing. He said it was not known if the men in the car fired on the officers.
It was not the only officer-involved shooting Tuesday. O’Toole said about an hour prior to the fatal shooting, O’Toole said, two uniformed officers in an unmarked car on Page Avenue were attacked by men armed with what he called “AK-style assault rifles.” Although they were both wearing clearly marked police vests, O’Toole said, he did not believe the alleged carjackers knew that the men were police officers.
The cars were stopped at an intersection when the man pointed the rifle at the officers and ordered them out of the car, according to O’Toole. The officers then returned fire, and pursued the other fleeing suspects in their car, which turned out to be another stolen vehicle that had been carjacked earlier.
One of the officers was struck in the face by glass fragments and was treated and released. The unnamed suspect, who is 21 years old, underwent surgery Tuesday afternoon for injuries not considered life-threatening, O’Toole said.
At least one suspect from this incident is still at large and the investigation is ongoing, O’Toole said.
O’Toole said “sadly, it is not a surprise to me” that an AK-style weapon was used, saying that police were encountering these kinds of weapons and violence on a regular basis. The weapon was reported stolen from Jefferson County, he said.
There have been at least six carjackings with these characteristics in recent weeks, O’Toole said.