ATLANTIC CITY, NJ (WTXF) - An Atlantic City Police Officer is now in critical, but stable condition after he was shot in the line of duty early Saturday morning while responding to a robbery call. Two people have been charged in connection with the shooting.
Officer Joshlee Vadell, 29, a nine-year-veteran, continues to recover at AtlantiCare.
Police have since arrested two Cumberland County men in connection with the shooting. More than a hundred officers from more than 20 departments flooded an Atlantic County courtroom Tuesday afternoon as the shooting suspects stood before a judge.
Nineteen-year-old, Martell Chisholm of Millville, NJ, and 28-year-old, Demetrius Cross of Bridgeton, NJ have been charged with 2 counts of Attempted Murder, 3 counts of Robbery, and other charges. The third suspect, 25-year-old Jerome Damon of Camden, NJ was shot and killed during the shootout.
Officials say just after 2:30 a.m., Officer Vadell and his partner were on uniformed patrol when they observed a robbery in progress being committed near the Caesars Atlantic City parking garage on Arkansas Avenue. As Vadell AC police officer exited the vehicle, he was shot and injured. The second police officer returned fire, hitting one suspect who fled the scene.
The officer's wife and family released the following statement:
I wanted to take an opportunity to thank everyone who played a role in helping us through this extremely difficult time. The individuals who have donated their time and resources to the comfort of our family as well as the capture of those responsible for this horrific crime are too numerous to name. Still, on behalf of my family, I do wish to acknowledge many of those who have helped.
I want to thank the officer who was partnered with Josh. Without him, Josh may not have made it and those responsible may never have been brought to justice. Also to the officers working that morning that got Josh to the hospital extremely fast so his medical treatment could begin immediately.
I would like to thank the surgeons, doctors, nurses and staff of AtlantiCare who acted quickly to give Josh the best possible chance at surviving this horrific act.
I would like to thank all the local businesses, who have contributed food to my family and to all the members of the law enforcement community who have been by my side ever since Josh was admitted to the hospital.
Finally, I want to thank the entire law enforcement community who joined together to quickly apprehend the suspects believed to be responsible for this shooting. Not only did your efforts help bring these people to justice, but they also potentially helped prevent any further acts of violence these individuals could commit.
I appreciate the thoughts, prayers and support of everyone in the community as we navigate this challenging next chapter of our lives while making sure Josh recovers. At this time, we would thank you for the continued respect of our privacy.