Unmarked police cruiser struck by gunfire; 2 in custody

Unmarked police cruiser struck by gunfire; 2 in custody

PHILADELPHIA (WTXF)  The area of the 5300 block of Hedge Street in Frankford was crawling with police after a group of men allegedly fired shots in a residential neighborhood, then police say, they fired shots at an officer in an unmarked car.

It happened just after 7 p.m. Friday night.

15th District officers were in the area of 5200 Frankford Avenue conducting a narcotics investigation.

An officer in an unmarked car dressed in plain clothes had two males from a narcotics arrest in the rear of his car. As he was traveling east on Bridge Street at Darrah, he heard gunshots and turned north on Lesher Street where he saw multiple people running.

The officer put out a radio call of the gunshots and of the people running from the scene.

He then turned east when he got to the corner of Lesher and Brill and then right again onto Hedge Street.

Police say that’s when a male came from his right and pointed a gun in the officer’s direction and fired several shots. Two bullets hit the unmarked Ford Taurus while the officer was still in driver’s seat.

Fortunately, the officer was not shot. A bullet went through the front bumper and into the radiator causing fluid to leak all over the street.

The officer took cover before stopping his car and giving chase on foot.

The male ran back into a side alley, which leads back west to Lesher Street. The officer followed and after clearing the alley, he entered and exited with his gun out when he saw three black males pointing guns at him.

The officer took cover and then verbally announced himself as a police officer before confronting them.

Two of the males, one of which was armed with a silver revolver, ran north on Lesher towards Brill. The third male started to run south toward Bridge with the gun, but was then cut off by responding officers.

The male began to run back and forth behind a parked mini-van and when the officer approached the male he heard the sound of metal striking the ground. He thought the male had thrown the handgun, however, no gun was found on the male or in the area.

The male was later identified as 21-year-old Malik Smith. He has been charged with pointing the gun at the officer, including aggravated assault, simple assault, VUFA lic, VUFA-streets, VUFA-former convict, REAP conspiracy, and related offenses.

A second male was stopped by police in the area of Duffield and Brill, but was cleared by investigation.

Police also stopped a third male, who was subsequently arrested for narcotics. He was later identified as 22-year-old Genex Johnson. He was charged with possession, however he was cleared by investigation for the shooting.

Police also stopped a 4th male on 1600 Granite Street, but he was also cleared by investigation.

No police officers were injured.

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