HILLSDALE, MO (KPLR) - A St. Louis area police officer was shot twice in the line of duty. The alleged shooter’s family said the suspect panicked. It happened around 12:30 Sunday morning not far from the Hillsdale Police Department.
A motorist who was visiting a family member in the neighborhood said, “I think it’s a tragedy. Cops get shot pretty much not safe for any of us I’m pretty concerned.”
Police said the shooting happened in the 6200 block of Bailey Place in Hillsdale. Family members said the suspect, 24-year-old Jared Williams was dropping off his son when he apparently was pulled over by police. The situation apparently escalated and police say Williams fired at the Hillsdale officer hitting him twice, the gunman ran away. Authorities said the officer fired back grazing Williams who was quickly arrested. Susan Beckton said she is the suspect’s mother-in-law. Beckton said, “I think they had some words and i think he thought he was going to be hurt and he actually panicked.”
Panicked or not he still allegedly shot the officer. Beckton said the 24-year-old suspect graduated from Normandy High School, played football and was mentored by police officers as a youngster. She was stunned her son-in-law is suspected of shooting a police officer. Beckton added, “Totally, totally out of his character.”
The gunman was taken to the hospital treated for non-life threatening injuries and released into police custody. Beckton said she heard more than ten shots fired. It was unnerving for people who live in the area. One woman said, “They’re (police) out here to protect and serve and people do crazy things I hope he (the officer) makes it.”
At last report the police officer, who has 26 years of law enforcement experience, was hospitalized in stable condition.
The gunman left the baby in his vehicle when he ran. The one-year-old was not hurt and was turned over to his family.
The St. Louis County Police Department is investigating the shooting.
Williams has been charged with assault 1st degree on law enforcement officer, armed criminal action, endangering the welfare of a child and resisting/interfering with arrest for a felony.
His bond has been set at $250,000 cash only.