Suspect in Philadelphia police officer shooting in custody

PHILADELPHIA, PA (WTXF) – Court records show accused gunman Scott Griffin was on the street Sunday night allegedly firing a gun at Philadelphia police officer James McCullough despite the fact that he was arrested just last month on gun charges.  but those charges were dismissed in court last week when two witnesses failed to appear. Griffin was released from jail before the charges could be re-instated by the DA the very next day.

It was just after 1 p.m. Monday when police swooped down on the 1200 block of North Alden Street and arrested 23-year-old Scott Griffin for the shooting Sunday night at 59th and Market.

Griffin was taken into custody after homicide and narcotics detectives developed information on his whereabouts overnight. He was arrested as he got out of a car without incident. Police say they also recovered a gun that may have been used in the shooting of the 24-year-old officer during a complicated crime spree in West Philadelphia.

“The shooter has a lengthy record. He's been arrested 14 times. The non-shooter has been arrested 3 times,” said Philadelphia Police Captain James Clark. 

The shooting of Officer McCullough comes just a few months after officer Jesse Hartnett was shot at point blank range a short distance away. Both officers work in the 18th district.

"Police officers never know from one encounter to the next what will be in front of them. It can be a very dangerous job," said Commissioner Richard Ross Jr. 

Police say Officer McCullough and his partner came upon a carjacking after an earlier robbery allegedly by Griffin and another man.The officers were chasing Griffin when gunfire erupted, according to investigators.

"While the officers pursued the suspect who had the gun, the suspect turned and shot the officer," said Philadelphia Police Captain James Clark. 

Police say McCullough fired three shots after being wounded. He was hospitalized in stable condition with a gunshot wound to his left leg. Police also arrested 20-year-old Samir Coyett as Griffin's alleged accomplice.

"The officer did an outstanding job. As the men and women of this department do each and every day," said Philadelphia Police Captain James Clark. 

James McCullough is home from the hospital.

Authorities say Griffin had as many as 14 prior arrests. 

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