Machete attack suspect shot by police in NJ

BUENA VISTA TWP., N.J. - August 17, 2012

The Atlantic County prosecutor's office says police spotted 43-year-old Eugenio Morales of Vineland, NJ walking near Route 54 in Buena Vista after he abandoned his vehicle along that road Friday evening.

When police approached, Morales allegedly attacked the officers with a weapon. At least one police officer then opened fire, wounding Morales. "All you heard was the sound of bullets going off," said one witness.

"I was pretty scared, because I knew this guy was wandering around here," Derek Santiago.

Morales was flown to Cooper Medical Center. His condition has not been released.

Residents in Atlantic County are relieved Morales has been captured.

"Everybody is just on edge a bit, because you didn't know where he was," said Tom Monfardini.

The prosecutor's office says the police officers were taken to a local hospital to be examined for injuries. The officers' names have not been released.

Morales was being sought in connection with an attack Wednesday night in Vineland, N.J.

Investigators say Morales attacked a 41-year-old woman with a machete, leaving her critically injured.

Witnesses told Action News that Morales and the woman were arguing inside an SUV parked in a driveway near 6th and Almond Streets.

Both got out, then Morales allegedly began swinging at the woman with a machete, striking her on the face, head, body and hands.

He stopped when a neighbor intervened and fled the scene.

Morales was charged Thursday with attempted homicide and weapons offenses and was actively being sought by police at the time he was shot.

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