Manhunt continues for suspects in cop shooting

Officer Kevin Livewell was shot in the right leg area while on duty on the 3000 block of North Water Street.

July 16, 2010 2:06:23 PM PDT
The manhunt continues for two suspects following a gun battle in Philadelphia that left a police officer wounded.

The men fled the scene after the shooting around 8:30 p.m. Thursday in the 3000 block of North Water Street in West Kensington.

The suspects are only described as Hispanic men.

The Fraternal Order of Police has announced a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the arreast of each person involved in the shooting.

The suspects fled in a van following the shooting, but it was located in the same block on Friday morning.

Action News has contacted officials with the company whose name appears on the van. They tell Action News that they have been cooperating with Philadelphia police as part of the investigation.

They went on to say the VIN on the vehicle matches a van the company had owned, but was totaled. They also said the license plate does not match any in the company's record.

The incident began as police stopped a van believed to be involved in an earlier shooting.

Investigators say two officers were immediately fired upon as they approached the vehicle. Both officers returned fire.

30-year-old Officer Kevin Livewell of the 24th District was shot by a bullet from an AK-47. Sources say he suffered a flesh wound to the right calf.

Livewell was rushed by a fellow officer to Temple University Hospital.

After the gunfire erupted, three suspects fled the scene and weapons were littered around the area. One man was later captured, and police say he was the van's driver. He has only been identified as a 37-year-old man with a history of drug arrests.

"He was captured by Officer Livewell's partner, he was actually tackled by Officer Livewell's partner," said Deputy Police Commissioner Richard Ross.

At a news conference on Friday morning, police put numerous guns on display that were recovered at the scene. The collection included five assault weapons, including the AK-47 used to shoot Livewell.

"They were very heavily armed, well-armed. We don't know what it is they intended to do, but whatever it was it was certainly no good," said Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey.

Ski masks were also found. Police say they were used by the suspects.

A witness, who did not want to use his full name, said it sounded like a war zone as the shots were fired Thursday night. "It was like Vietnam, dude," said the witness, Ronnie. "One of the bullets went through the drain pipe in front of the house. My buddy was standing there. He almost got shot."

Officer Livewell is married with two children and is a 9 year veteran of the Philadelphia Police Department.

He is expected to undergo surgery this weekend and was last reported in stable condition.