D.C. police officers wounded a robbery suspect Tuesday during a shootout with the man, who was in an SUV in Southeast Washington, authorities said.
Police said they did not know at the time that the man had carjacked the vehicle and that several other people inside were victims. Before the carjacking, police said, the man had robbed four other people at gunpoint and fired at them as they fled.
The incident unfolded about 12:10 a.m. near Sixth Street and Alabama Avenue in Congress Heights. No victims, officers or bystanders were injured, police said.
Police had initially said that no one was hit by gunfire, but in a later statement, authorities said the alleged gunman, Luvell Alverson, 22, of Suitland, Md., had been shot in the leg.
Alverson, who was arrested after a standoff, was charged with armed robbery, kidnapping and assault on a police officer. He is expected to make an initial appearance in D.C. Superior Court on Wednesday.
ShotSpotter, a system that detects the sound of gunfire, alerted officers to the situation.
As officers approached the vehicle, a suspect inside opened fire, D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said.
The chief said the SUV backed up and that officers took cover. “Additional shots were fired from the SUV, and [officers] returned fire,” she said.
Police initially took everyone in the SUV into custody but later concluded that one man was responsible.
“He will be charged and presented in court tomorrow,” Lanier said. “The remainder of the people appear to be victims.”
Police said they did not believe that the shooting was connected in any way to the recent shooting deaths by police in Minnesota and Louisiana. “We don’t have information or believe that it was a targeted attack or a planned attack on police,” said Dustin Sternbeck, the chief D.C. police spokesman.
Tensions are high after the two fatal shootings of black men by white police officers, followed by the fatal shootings of five white police officers in Dallas in apparent retaliation. D.C. officers, along with those in many other departments, are currently patrolling streets in pairs.
In a separate, earlier shooting in Southeast, police said that about 11:15 p.m. Monday, a man and three juvenile women, all in their teens, were shot and wounded in the 5100 block of Call Place SE, near Benning Terrace. It is about five miles from the site of the police shootout, and authorities said they do not believe that the two incidents were related.
Police also were called to Call Place because of ShotSpotter. A police report says that when officers arrived, they found the four victims. One was shot in the upper back and thigh, another in the left leg, a third in the right hand and the fourth in the buttocks, according to the report.
The only lookout was for a black vehicle. No arrests have been made.