Man is shot and killed by D.C. police officer

By Emma Brown and Clarence Williams
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, October 25, 2009

A man who wielded a handgun while struggling with a D.C. police officer was fatally shot by the officer Saturday in Northwest Washington, police said.

The confrontation occurred near the 700 block of Taylor Street NW in Petworth about 10:15 a.m. after police received a report that people were tampering with a car in the vicinity, police said.

Two or more people fled as police arrived, according to police accounts, and were pursued. One of those who fled drew a gun, but it fell, said D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier.

An officer grappled with the man, and as the two struggled, the man retrieved the gun, Lanier said. She said the officer fired a shot, striking the man in the shoulder.

The suspect ran into an alley in the 800 block of Upshur Street, where he collapsed but continued to struggle with police. A handgun was recovered in the alley, Lanier said. The gunman, whose name was not available, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said they later arrested two other men as they were leaving a convenience store at Georgia Avenue and Quincy Street. Both men, one in his 20s and one in his 30s, were charged with tampering with an automobile, police said. Lanier said one of the two had a handgun.

Lanier said she is concerned about the number of armed suspects who are willing to challenge police. "It's a worrisome trend," she said.

The police department's Force Investigation Team is looking into the shooting.

Meanwhile, the officer who fired, a 33-year-old who has been on the force for 10 years, has been placed on administrative leave with pay, as is routine.

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