Officer unhurt after Durham police car shot
Posted February 4, 2015
Durham, N.C. — A Durham police officer escaped injury Wednesday when someone fired a shot at his unmarked patrol car.
The shooting occurred shortly before noon near the intersection of South Street and Scout Drive, police said.
The car was hit by one bullet, and several nearby homes were also sprayed with gunfire, police said.
Sierra Williams said she was sitting on her porch nearby when she heard at least seven shots fired. She described the scene as "basically a war zone."
"I lost count after seven, and those were the big shots I heard. So, after that, I ran in the house," Williams said. "Something is always happening in this neighborhood or around this neighborhood. Only thing we can do is stay in the house."
The officer, whose name hasn't been released, drove away from the area after the shooting.
Police Chief Jose Lopez said the officer was clearly targeted, saying that the officer was on his way to conduct official business when someone in a vehicle on Bond Street opened fire.
"It was not by chance that they were apparently shooting at someone else. They were clearly shooting at this vehicle," Lopez said, noting that, even though it has no Durham Police Department markings, it has an antenna and a state license plate indicative of a police car.
"This is a highly serious situation. When you have somebody who would shoot at law enforcement, (they) would shoot at someone a lot quicker, and we need to get these individuals off the street," he said.
Investigators said they believe the shots were fired from an older-model, gray sedan with tinted windows, possibly a Nissan. Two men wearing blue-and-black jackets were in the car, and police said they believe both men fired shots during the incident.
Lopez said he is concerned about his officers but said there but is no evidence that the shooting is connected to two December incidents in which other Durham officers were shot at.
Officer J.T. West was in his patrol car on Lakeland Street on Christmas night when two men approached his vehicle and one fired six shots at him. He wasn't wounded by suffered an injury as he dove for cover.
On Dec. 29, someone fired a shot at the apartment of an off-duty officer. The officer wasn't wounded, but a sliding glass door to his dining room was shattered.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information leading to an arrest in Wednesday's shooting. Anyone with information is asked to call Durham police at 919-560-4415, extension 29306, or Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200.