Suspect fires at plainclothes officer during narcotics investigation in Philadelphia

Maggie Kent Image
Wednesday, August 19, 2020
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Police are searching for the man who opened fire on a plainclothes Philadelphia police officer.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Police are searching for the man who opened fire on a plainclothes Philadelphia police officer inside of his unmarked car on Tuesday.

The shooting happened at about noon on 4300 block of N. Clarissa Street in the Tioga-Nicetown section of Philadelphia.

Investigators say the narcotics officer was sitting in his car when he was shot at. He quickly returned fire with his service weapon, which sent the suspect running and led to SWAT teams fanning out in the area of 4100 block of Germantown Avenue.

Police say the officer was initially in the area during a narcotics investigation.

"Someone, who was the focus, or the person of interest in that investigation approached the narcotics officer and open fire...the officer, from his car, did in fact return fire. At this point we don't know if the discharge by the police officer actually struck anyone," said Staff Inspector Sekou Kinebrew.

As the search continues for the shooter, nervous parents rushed to pick up their children from a nearby day care, and a large section of the neighborhood was shut down throughout the afternoon.

When asked if the shooter knew if he was aiming at a police officer, despite his undercover appearance, Staff Inspector Kinebrew said, "The officer was in plainclothes, in an unmarked car, and was targeted. So you can draw whatever inference you need to draw from that."

The officer was not injured in the shooting.

The Officer-Involved Shooting unit and Internal Affairs will investigate the incident, as they do whenever an officer fires their service weapon.

Police are in touch with local hospitals to see if a shooting victim matching the description of the suspect arrives for care.