Police officer shoots, critically wounds boy, 14

March 11, 1994|By David Michael Ettlin and Gregory P. Kane | David Michael Ettlin and Gregory P. Kane,Sun Staff Writers

A 14-year-old boy was shot and critically wounded by a police officer yesterday after pointing a gun at a man on a shopping center parking lot in West Baltimore, authorities said.

According to police, two officers on patrol saw the youth pointing the gun at the man about 4:30 p.m. at the Walbrook Junction shopping center. Police said they told the youth to drop the gun, but instead he turned toward the officers with the weapon still in his hand.

The youth, identified as Charlie William Maultsby of the 3500 block of Foxcliff Court in Randallstown, was shot once in the chest. He was in critical condition after surgery late last night at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

The gun was an air pistol that the youth had carried in a shoulder holster, said Agent Doug Price, a police department spokesman.

Agent Price said detectives were interviewing witnesses late last night -- including the man involved in the parking lot confrontation.

According to the police spokesman, the man complained that the youth had fired the pistol at his 9-year-old daughter about 4 p.m. He said he went to the shopping center looking for the youth, and got involved in a fight with him there.

Police said the youth had pulled the weapon from his holster when Southwestern District Officers Ernest Coppage and Juan Oliver arrived.

Agent Price said Officer Coppage ordered the youth to drop the gun and then fired three shots when the young suspect turned toward him with weapon in hand.

Officer Coppage, 27, who has been on the force four years, was put on administrative duty pending the outcome of the investigation, the spokesman said.

Agent Price said the air pistol was "a big gun," closely resembling a Colt Python, and that the officer believed he was in "imminent danger."

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