The search for a man suspected of shooting a New Orleans police officer in the leg late Monday night in Central City ended early Tuesday when a man police believe was the shooter was found hiding between two houses, not far from where gunfire broke out hours earlier.
Police found the man a little after midnight in the 2200 block of Third Street. He was without most of his clothes and covered in mud after he tried to evade police by hiding under a house inside a perimeter police set up after the shooting.
Police did not immediately release the man’s name and age.
The shooting happened a little before 10 p.m. near Third and LaSalle streets, about two blocks from where the suspect was later collared.
The wounded officer was a member of the 6th District task force and was working as part of a “high-saturation patrol” in response to a recent spike in carjackings and armed robberies in the area, Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas said.
The wounded officer’s name was not immediately released. His injury was not believed to be serious, Serpas said.
The wounded officer and his partner were in a marked police car when they made eye contact with a man on foot near the corner. The man began to run after he saw the officers and made a motion that led them to believe he was armed, Serpas said.
As the man ran, he turned and fired at one officer and spun around and fired at the other officer, striking him in the leg. Serpas said the officers got out of their squad car but it was not immediately clear if the injured officer was hit while still in the car or after he stepped outside of the vehicle.
At least one of the officers returned fire, Serpas said, but the man apparently was not hit and managed to escape. It wasn’t immediately clear how many rounds police fired.
Police set up a perimeter of about 15 square blocks around the shooting. They eventually found the man about two blocks from where it occurred.
Paramedics brought the man to the hospital to be examined after a police dog bit him, said officer Frank Robertson, an NOPD spokesman.
The severity of his wounds was not immediately known, but the man was sitting upright and talking with officers after he was handcuffed.