Detroit police shoot man they say fled in stolen vehicle

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

A suspect in the theft of an automobile was shot by a Detroit police officer early Friday after a pursuit, city officials reported.

Officers were seeking someone in connection with a vehicle reported stolen last month from a post-factory holding facility in Hamtramck when they spotted both the vehicle and the suspect around 12:30 a.m. at a gas station near Schoolcraft and Outer Drive, the Detroit Police Department said in a statement.

"The officers recognized the suspect and the stolen vehicle from a previous incident when he fled and eluded officers during a traffic stop on a prior date," the release read.

As the officers approached, the suspect ran back to the vehicle and jumped into the driver’s seat, investigators said.

Police positioned their vehicle in front and tried to open the suspect's side door, but he backed up with two officers caught between, according to the release. They were not injured.

"At that point, the officer fired one shot, resulting in injury to the leg and abdomen," police said.

Meanwhile, a female passenger who had been trying to exit the front passenger side was briefly wedged between the fleeing vehicle and another parked car, authorities said.

The suspect — who was on probation and has an extensive criminal history including auto thefts — drove off with a third person inside. Investigators later found the stolen vehicle near the 15700 block of Grandville.

A K-9 unit tracked the suspect and the other passenger to a nearby home.

The suspect was taken into custody and transported to a local hospital. He was listed in temporary serious condition Friday.

The officer involved in the shooting has been placed on administrative leave, police representatives said. The Michigan State Police is leading the investigation into the incident.