Suspect who shot officer in standoff died from police fire

Police and medics respond to an active shooter situation in Philadelphia
REUTERS FILE PHOTO

Philadelphia police said Friday a suspect who allegedly shot three civilians before barricading himself in a house and shooting a transit police officer during a standoff earlier in the week was likely killed by police gunfire.

Police identified the shooter as 18-year-old Zyhiem Hartman, saying the medical examiner’s office had determined he died from police gunfire after being struck twice, including in the head. A Philadelphia police spokesman had said Wednesday night after the standoff that they believed the suspect may have shot himself.

Police said in a news release Friday that they believe Hartman had a physical argument with a man, and when that man walked away, Hartman fired shots at him. The man later walked into the hospital with two gunshot wounds to the neck. Police say during that altercation Hartman also struck two women in the hip and buttocks.

Two Philadelphia police officers on patrol heard those gunshots around 7 p.m. Wednesday and saw Hartman standing with a gun shortly after. Police say he ran, the officers chased him and eventually Hartman ran into a house and forced his way into an upstairs apartment. Hartman broke out two windows in that apartment and fired at officers from the second floor.

During that exchange of gunfire with officers, police said Hartman shot Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority Police Officer Ervis Onuzi in the stomach. Police said Friday that Onuzi is in critical but stable condition recovering from surgery.

Officers entered the building when SWAT equipment showed the man appeared to be unconscious near a second-floor window, police said. Officers found Hartman dead from a gunshot wound. Police recovered what authorities call a ghost gun— an unregistered, homemade gun without a serial number— near Hartman.

Police said seven officers fired shots during the exchange, but did not release their names Friday.

 

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