- At least five police officers were injured in an active shooting incident in Philadelphia on Wednesday, authorities said.
- The police department said a suspect or suspects were firing at police.
- Local media outlets showed harrowing footage of heavily armed officers ducking and diving for cover amid gunfire.
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At least five police officers were shot in an rapidly unfolding gun battle in the northern Philadelphia neighborhood of Nicetown-Tioga on Wednesday, authorities confirmed.
The officers were taken to nearby hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries, Sgt. Eric Gripp of the Philadelphia Police Department tweeted.
Gripp tweeted that a suspect or suspects were firing at the police. He urged people to avoid the area, and told media helicopters to pull back and stop broadcasting officers’ tactical positions.
“Suspect is still firing. STAY OUT OF THE AREA,” he tweeted around 6 p.m. EST.
Local ABC affiliate WPVI reported that as many as six officers were injured in total, citing the president of the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police, John McNesby. Five of those officers were reportedly shot, one of whom was grazed by a bullet, and the sixth sustained unspecified injuries.
Shooting situation ACTIVE and ONGOING on 3700 15th St. Avoid Area. Several PPD Officers have been injured. Updates will be provided as received
— Eric Gripp (@PPDEricGripp) August 14, 2019
Local media outlets showed harrowing images and videos of a massive police presence inundating the neighborhood, with heavily armed officers – some in tactical gear – ducking and taking cover behind buildings and cars.
Gunfire could be heard throughout live broadcasts and bullets could be seen spraying out of a home, ricocheting off the surrounding buildings.
One officer could be seen rushing into a police cruiser, his arm drenched in blood.
Tens of thousands of listeners tuned in to Philadelphia’s police scanner online as first responders’ on-the-ground narratives of the incident unfolded. The details from the scanners remained unconfirmed by officials.
The local CBS affiliate reported that officers were first called to the scene Wednesday afternoon for reports of narcotics activity. The officers were trying to serve a warrant when gunfire broke out, WPVI reported.
Nearby, Temple University’s Health Sciences Center campus was placed on lockdown, the school tweeted, advising those in the building to “be still” and “seek shelter.”
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.