Crime

Officer, suspect suffer gunshots in Edwardsville

An Edwardsville police officer was shot early Wednesday morning while attempting to serve a search warrant.

Illinois State Police Capt. Jim Morrisey said an Edwardsville officer, a Madison County Sheriff’s deputy and several other officers from other agencies were at the home at 322 S. Fillmore St. in Edwardsville to serve a search warrant on a computer in connection with a child pornography investigation. The resident, who is in his 40s, answered the door, shook the officers’ hands and then displayed a handgun, Morrisey said.

There was a struggle over the weapon, Morrisey said. At least one shot was fired from the deputy's weapon. It wasn’t immediately clear if the resident fired a shot.

The Edwardsville officer was struck in the hand. The resident was shot in the jaw. Both were transported to a local hospital where they were alert and responding.

Illinois State Police will investigate the officers’ actions with regard to their use of force, Morrissey said.

The initial investigation that spawned the search warrant has been turned over to Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. That task force investigates child pornography, according to a spokesman for Madigan’s office.

Edwardsville Police Chief Jay Keeven did not identify the officers, but said he believed the one who was injured had at least 15 years on the job.

“Our officer will be OK; he received a gunshot wound to the hand,” Keeven said.

The South Fillmore block was cordoned off by police tape and officers were standing guard Wednesday morning, which neighbor Charles Ellis said was an unusual sight for Edwardsville residents.

“This is not common here,” Ellis said. “I’m shocked… You couldn’t ask for a more beautiful town, you don’t see this kind of commotion or drama here.”

The Edwardsville Police officer and the suspect were taken to a hospital following the shooting. The suspect reportedly was flown from an Illinois hospital to a St. Louis hospital, and was in serious condition. The officer was listed in good condition at a local hospital. Police said both the officer and the suspect walked to the ambulance and were conscious when they were taken to hospitals.

It is the second officer-involved shooting this week for Madison County. On Monday, a Worden man sought for questioning in a St. Louis shooting investigation was shot and killed by Alton Police. Illinois State Police are also investigating that shooting. While Alton Police officials have referred comment on their case to state police, a statement of support for Edwardsville was posted on their Facebook page Wednesday.

“Our thoughts go out to the Edwardsville Police and Madison County Sheriff’s Department today,” it read. “All officers know it is possible, but none hope it happens to them. When an officer does have to discharge their weapon, it is hard for them too. Please remember that as you post any comments about the incidents and keep everyone involved in your thoughts and prayers now and forever.”

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