HYATTSVILLE, Md. — Bladensburg Police officers shot and wounded a man late Sunday night, who they say tried to run officers down in a stolen car before engaging in a police chase crossing the border into D.C.
Officers were first sent to the 5100 block of 57th Avenue in Bladensburg, Maryland for a report of two men wearing ski masks who were described as "acting suspiciously" and tampering with motor vehicles around 11:51 p.m. Once on the scene, officers saw two men in ski masks and tried to speak to them, Bladensburg Police said.
One of the men ran away, but was quickly stopped. The second man got into a car, that was later confirmed by the DC Police department to be stolen. The officers said they asked the driver multiple times to stop and show his hands, but he did not comply and sped towards the officers in attempt to hit them.
The driver hit the back of one of the marked police cruisers, causing significant damage. The officers said they fired their weapons in self defense towards the car, hitting and wounding the driver. A police chase ensued, spanning from Bladensburg, Maryland to the District.
Eventually, the man was stopped by police in the 2300 block of Good Hope Road in Southeast D.C. around midnight, authorities said. He was taken to a local hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening wounds.
According to Bladensburg police chief Tyrone Collington, the unidentified man drove the entire distance with the damaged hood of his car up.
"It's a miracle no motorists were injured and no innocent pedestrians walking along the sidewalks or crosswalks were injured by this individual who was hell bent on fleeing from us," Collington said.
Collington said officers considered the car to be used as a weapon.
"To have a 4000-pound weapon speeding at you, you're going to be forced to make some split second decisions," Collington said.
In the aftermath, Bladensburg residents who spoke to WUSA9 said the neighborhood where the police shooting happened has been plagued by car thefts and vandalism.
Criminal charges are pending, officials said. The Bladensburg Police Department and the Prince George's Police Department are jointly investigating the incident.
Anyone with additional information relative to this case is urged to call the Bladensburg Police at 301-864-6080 or Prince George's Police at 301-516-5721. Anonymous tips can be sent to Crime Solvers by calling 1-866-411-TIPS (8477) or texting "PGPD plus your message" to CRIMES (274637).
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