Shootout with housing police leaves 25-year-old man dead

May 06, 1994|By Michael James | Michael James,Sun Staff Writer

A 25-year-old man was shot and killed in a run-and-gun shootout last night with four Housing Authority police officers in East Baltimore -- the second shooting involving Housing Authority police in as many days.

Last night's shooting occurred about 8 p.m. when the four officers went to investigate a report of shots fired at the Somerset Court public housing complex and saw a man running in the 200 block of N. Aisquith St. with .44-caliber pistol in his hand, housing police said.

The officers began chasing the man and he opened fire on them and then ran, said Zack Germroth, a spokesman for the Housing Authority of Baltimore City.

"He would shoot and run, then shoot and run," Mr. Germroth said.

None of the officers was hit by the gunfire. They continued chasing the man, returning gunfire at two points during the chase, Mr. Germroth said.

The gunman, apparently seeking an escape route from the officers, ducked into the lobby of the Lafayette Courts public high-rise project and attempted to get past the guard booth. But the NOI Security Agency Inc. guards who monitor the door would not buzz him in, Mr. Germroth said.

Unable to gain entry, the man turned back toward the front door and saw that the four officers were converging on him. He opened fire again, and the officers returned fire, Mr. Germroth said.

Mr. Germroth said it is unknown how many shots were fired. "Some of the officers fired more than one time, so more than four shots were fired," he said.

The gunman was shot at least once, although Mr. Germroth said he didn't know what part of the man's body was hit.

Mr. Germroth said the man died a short time later but that he could not say whether he was pronounced dead at the scene or was taken to a hospital. The man's name was being withheld pending notification of relatives.

Mr. Germroth would not identify the officers involved until the investigation is completed.

On Wednesday, a plainclothes Housing Authority police officer -- whom police have refused to identify to protect his undercover status -- was involved in a fight that ended with 28-year-old Barry Patrick Gardner being shot in the upper torso.

The officer's gun discharged during the fight at the Gilmor Homes public housing project in the 1400 block of Mountmor Court, police said.

Mr. Gardner was listed in critical condition last night at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

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