Officer shoots, kills robbery suspect in Oxford Circle

A re­spec­ted foot beat of­ficer from the 2nd Po­lice Dis­trict shot and killed a sus­pec­ted rob­ber who al­legedly as­saul­ted him on an Ox­ford Circle street Tues­day af­ter­noon.

Phil­adelphia po­lice have not iden­ti­fied the in­jured of­ficer or the al­leged rob­ber pub­licly, but de­scribed the cop as a 39-year-old 17-year vet­er­an of the force.

The epis­ode un­fol­ded at about 4 p.m. on the 6500 block of Castor Ave. Po­lice com­mand­ers told news re­port­ers at the scene that the of­ficer saw a mug­ging in pro­gress and at­temp­ted to ar­rest the crook, who punched the cop and ran.

Dur­ing a foot chase and en­su­ing phys­ic­al struggle, the of­ficer at­temp­ted to Taser the sus­pect twice be­fore the sus­pect al­legedly lif­ted the of­ficer and slammed him head­long to the pave­ment.

The of­ficer drew his gun and ordered the sus­pect to the ground, but the sus­pect failed to com­ply, po­lice said. The of­ficer shot him once, strik­ing the sus­pect in the chest.

The al­leged rob­ber was taken to Aria Health-Tor­res­dale where he died shortly be­fore 5 p.m. He was 45 and had eight pri­or ar­rests for as­saults, re­tail thefts, rape, har­ass­ment and pro­tec­tion from ab­use vi­ol­a­tions.

The of­ficer was taken to Al­bert Ein­stein Med­ic­al Cen­ter in stable con­di­tion with pos­sible head in­jur­ies. A TV news video showed him climb­ing in­to the back of an am­bu­lance un­der his own power.

Po­lice com­mand­ers and Castor Av­en­ue mer­chants said that the in­jured of­ficer was as­signed to the foot beat about six months ago in re­sponse to a rash of rob­ber­ies. Sev­er­al mer­chants said that the of­ficer had de­veloped a strong rap­port with them and had im­proved con­di­tions in the busi­ness cor­ridor.

The of­ficer will be re­as­signed to desk duty pending an in­tern­al in­vest­ig­a­tion of the shoot­ing and a re­view of the in­vest­ig­a­tion by the Dis­trict At­tor­ney’s Of­fice. ••

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