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Manhunt in Baltimore After Officer Shot05/22 06:13

   PERRY HALL, Md. (AP) -- Police backed by aircraft and trained dogs scoured a 
greater Baltimore suburb into the early hours Tuesday, seeking suspects 
believed armed and dangerous after the death of a female officer.

   Baltimore County Police Cpl. Shawn Vinson said Monday evening that the 
enormous manhunt was continuing unabated in the suburban community of Perry 
Hall, Maryland, where witnesses reported hearing a pop before seeing a Jeep run 
over the officer Monday afternoon.

   "The dark will not hamper our investigation," Vinson vowed at a news 
briefing Monday evening.

   The officer, who wasn't immediately identified, was bleeding badly from 
significant injuries and was pronounced dead after being rushed to a hospital. 
Vinson said investigators have recovered the suspects' abandoned Jeep, but 
police declined to confirm whether it was used to injure the officer.

   Relatives of the officer, who would have been on the force four years by 
July, have been notified.

   Tony Kurek told The Associated Press his adult son was outside in the 
family's yard Monday afternoon in the northeast Baltimore County community when 
the son saw the officer with her gun drawn, confronting the occupants of a Jeep.

   "The next thing he heard was a pop, and he saw the Jeep take off and run 
right over her," said Kurek. The car left skid marks behind, he said, leaving 
the officer down and bleeding.

   Logan Kurek, who is a volunteer firefighter, said he heard his younger 
brother "frantically screaming" and ran outside to perform CPR.

   Vinson said the officer went to investigate a call about a suspicious 
vehicle when she encountered at least one suspect and was "critically injured." 
He added that the confrontation may have stemmed from a burglary in progress, 
noting one home on the block had damage to a patio door.

   "What exactly happened, we are not sure yet until an autopsy is performed," 
Vinson said at a news conference Monday. He said he had no information about 
whether she had fired her own weapon.

   He added that a homicide investigation has been opened. Officers were 
searching for suspects "who we believe are armed and dangerous," Police Chief 
Terrence Sheridan said.

   Events began unfolding Monday afternoon in the leafy neighborhood of 
single-family homes. It was then that Kurek's neighbor, Dahle Amendt, said he 
had just settled into his recliner for a rest when he heard a woman's voice 
outside his house.

   "I heard, 'Get out of the car!' 'Get out of the car!' Get out of the car!' 
at least three times, and then a pop," Amendt said.

   Amendt said his wife also ran outside and tried to revive the officer.

   "This is a shock. It's a quiet community. It's just so sad," Amendt said.

   Investigators urged residents in a sizable swath of Perry Hall to stay 
hunkered down inside their homes and lock all doors and windows as officers 
search the community fringed with woodlands. Three elementary schools were kept 
on alert status for hours, with students and teachers told to stay in their 
school buildings as police continued a search for the suspects. But by Monday 
evening, parents were allowed to come to the schools to pick up their 
youngsters.

   School officials tweeted overnight that all Baltimore County public schools 
would open on time Tuesday.

   At a gas station located at a cordoned-off intersection, some residents 
gathered to watch three helicopters of TV news crews buzzing overhead, an 
unmarked car with law enforcers, including one officer cradling a rifle in the 
back seat, drove past and was waved through by police manning the intersection.

   Heavily armed officers with a trained canine also could be seen in 
helicopter news footage as they scrambled across neatly manicured backyards. A 
pair of officers elsewhere, with guns drawn, entered a home's front door during 
the search.

   "It's pretty scary," said Sukvir Singh, an employee of the gas station.


(KA)

 
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