Police Continue Search For Gunman Who Shot Detective In Garage

… Officer released from hospital, suffered graze wound …

baltimoresun.com

by Peter Hermann, The Baltimore Sun

12:35 PM EST, January 20, 2011

Baltimore police continue to search for a gunman who shot a homicide detective in a downtown parking garage a block from police headquarters on Tuesday.

The detective – who was heading to his car to retrieve a pair of running shoes — suffered a graze wound to his leg and has been treated and released from Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

Police have declined to name the officer, citing a policy of not publicizing names of shooting victims who survive their wounds.

The shooting occurred on the eve of the funeral for plainclothes Officer William H. Torbit Jr., 33, who was shot and killed Jan. 9 by fellow police officers who mistook him for a gunman during a fight outside a nightclub near downtown.

Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III had attended a viewing for Torbit and had just gotten home when he had to rush to Shock Trauma to meet with the detective and his family. Police have not discussed whether they have any leads in the shooting.

It occurred shortly after 9 p.m. in a garage on South Frederick Street near the Central District police station, where many officers who work in nearby headquarters or in the district station park their personal vehicles.

Bealefeld, addressing reporters outside Shock Trauma after the shooting, called it a “random, chance encounter.” A police spokesman said the detective had returned to his car to get the shoes so he could work out before the start of his overnight shift.

In the garage, police said the detective apparently noticed a man with a small-caliber revolver, identified himself as an officer and confronted him. Police said the detective discharged his weapon, but it was not clear whether the man was hit or who fired first.

The detective was wounded in the leg and hurt his shoulder when he fell, police said. Authorities said the incident does not appear to have been a robbery attempt.

peter.hermann@baltsun.com

Copyright © 2011, The Baltimore Sun

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