Two New Jersey police detectives were wounded in an ambush-style shooting Tuesday night while sitting in their vehicle at a red light in Camden, New Jersey, WTXF reported.
“The information we have thus far is that they were essentially ambushed,” Camden County Police Chief J. Scott Thomson said at a late night news conference Tuesday. “A male walked up and began opening fire. We have anywhere between 10 and 25 rounds that were fired at the officers.”
Police are not yet aware of a motive for the attack. Both the male and the female police officers were wearing plainclothes and driving in an unmarked vehicle.
“Maybe they did know they were police officers and that’s the reason why they did it. Maybe they thought they were somebody else. We’ll find that out as the investigation unfolds,” Thomson said.
One of the officers was able to return fire at the suspect who then fled the scene.
“We don’t know if his rounds struck anyone or anything,” Thomson said.
Both officers were rushed to Cooper University Hospital and their injuries are not expected to be fatal.
“Our officers have non-life-threatening injuries but not for the grace of God, quite frankly,” Thomson said. “The amount of rounds that were fired at close range and particularly through the windshield.”
The attack occurred on National Night Out, an evening designed to build relationships between police officers and those in their community.
“It’s not lost on us that tonight of all nights this happened to our officers,” Thomson said. “… Unfortunately on a night when we’re supposed to be celebrating safety, two of our detectives were engaged as victims.
“I can tell you every cop in this land would say we’d rather have it (be) us than the citizenry,” the chief added.
Police are still searching for the suspect or suspects, including checking area hospitals for anyone admitted for gunshot wounds.
“We have a rapidly unfolding investigation to identify and apprehend the perpetrators,” Thomson said.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy responded to news of the attack Wednesday morning.
“Shocked by last night’s shooting of two Camden County PD detectives on National Night Out, and grateful none of their injuries are life-threatening,” Murphy wrote on Twitter.
“We remain committed to being part of Camden’s turnaround and to building a safer by getting guns off our streets.”
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