Suspect tried to run over Pittsburgh officer, who fired shots

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Pittsburgh police are searching late Tuesday night for two men who were in a car that they said tried to run over an officer, who then fired his service weapon.

Major Crimes Lt. Dan Herrmann said Pittsburgh police received a call shortly before 5 p.m. for a report that a man who was wanted on several warrants out of the city and Wilkinsburg was at a home on Mellon Street in East Liberty. Police did not find him in the house but later spotted him riding in a black Mazda with Indiana license plates.

Police followed the car as it turned onto East Liberty Boulevard and stopped at a light to turn left onto Negley Avenue about 5:45 p.m.

The Mazda stopped behind a civilian car. Two marked police cars pulled up beside it and two marked cars pulled up behind it.

Officers turned on their lights, trying to signal that the civilian driver should move out of the way. The confused driver lingered for a moment and an officer got out of the police wagon beside the suspect car and began motioning for the civilian driver to move, police said.

When the civilian car moved, the Mazda driver revved his engine and headed toward the officer while turning left, Lt. Herrmann said. He said the officer fired in fear of his safety and the Mazda driver sped away.

The officer's bullet shattered the window near the passenger seat, where the suspect they were seeking on warrants was sitting, Lt. Herrmann said.

Pittsburgh police asked neighboring departments to be on the lookout for the getaway car, and Wilkinsburg police spotted on North Avenue near the intersection with Pitt Street about 7:45 p.m. Blood stained the passenger seat. Neither the driver not the passenger appeared to be nearby.

The woman who was renting the car reported it stolen tonight.

Lt. Herrmann said police did not know the driver's identity tonight. Police did not officially confirm the name of the passenger, but sources identified him as 24-year-old Bennie Wilson, who has been known to frequent Wilkinsburg and the Hill District. Anyone with information about either of the men's whereabouts is asked to call 911.

mobilehome - neigh_city - breaking

First Published December 25, 2012 6:30 PM


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