PHOTOS: Philadelphia gunman identified after hourslong standoff

A police officer patrols the block near a house as they investigate an active shooting situation, Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2019, in the Nicetown neighborhood of Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Police urge people to leave the area as they investigate an active shooting situation, Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2019, in the Nicetown neighborhood of Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Police officers stand near the scene of a shooting Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2019, in the Nicetown neighborhood of Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Authorities stage as they respond to an active shooting situation, Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2019, in the Nicetown neighborhood of Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

An hours-long standoff where a gunman shot at police, wounding six of them, as he was barricaded inside a Philadelphia home somehow ended with no fatalities.

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross, who spent hours Wednesday negotiating with the gunman through the phone, said the situation that unfolded “could have been far worse.”

READ MORE: Several police officers shot in Philadelphia

“This was a very dynamic situation, one that I hope we never see again,” he said Thursday outside the Philadelphia Police Department, which is in the process of investigating the scene.

The gunman eventually came out of the home early Thursday after police deployed tear gas in the building. He was taken to a hospital for evaluation and then placed into custody.

A law enforcement official identified the suspect as Maurice Hill. The official said the 36-year-old has a criminal record that includes firearms charges. The official wasn’t authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.

The standoff started around 4:30 p.m. as officers went to a home in a north Philadelphia neighbourhood of brick and stone row homes to serve a narcotics warrant in an operation “that went awry almost immediately,” Ross said.

Many officers “had to escape through windows and doors to get (away) from a barrage of bullets,” Ross said.

The six officers who were struck by gunfire have been released from hospitals, said Philadelphia Police Sgt. Eric Gripp.

Two other officers were trapped inside the house for about five hours after the shooting broke out but were freed by a SWAT team well after darkness fell on the residential neighbourhood.

Ross said the reason he made the unusual decision to be the person negotiating with Hill was because he was “so worried” about his officers stuck inside.

“I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I was 200 feet away,” he said Thursday.

Three people who officers had taken into custody in the house before the shooting started were also safely evacuated, police said.

Police implored the gunman to surrender, at one point patching in his lawyer on the phone with him to try to persuade him to give up, Ross said.

Authorities also held a press conference amidst the standoff in hopes that the gunman or someone he was communicating with may hear them. Ross said he was “very intentional and deliberate” with the words he used during the briefing since he was not sure if Hill knew there were two officers trapped upstairs.

Temple University locked down part of its campus, and several children and staff were trapped for some time in a nearby day care.

Police tried to push crowds of onlookers and residents back from the scene. In police radio broadcasts, officers could be heard calling for backup as reports of officers getting shot poured in.

“There was just a lot of screaming and chaos,” said Abdul Rahman Muhammad, 21, an off-duty medic.

Dozens of officers on foot lined the streets. Others were in cars and some on horses.

President Donald Trump and Attorney General William Barr were briefed on the shooting, officials said.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said he was thankful that officers’ injuries weren’t life-threatening.

“I’m a little angry about someone having all that weaponry and all that firepower, but we’ll get to that another day,” Kenney said.

Associated Press writers Ron Todt in Philadelphia, Michael Balsamo in Washington, Caleb Jones in Honolulu and Michael Rubinkam in Allentown, Pennsylvania, contributed to this report.

Christina Paciolla And Claudia Lauer, The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Pipeline at centre of B.C. conflict is creating jobs for First Nations: chief

All 20 elected band councils along the Coastal GasLink pipeline route have signed benefits agreements

Job placement office open in Fort St. James

Office being opened for forestry workers affected by mill closures

RCMP create access control checkpoint on Morice West Forest Service Road

Premier says Coastal GasLink project will proceed despite opposition

Horgan says ‘rule of law applies,’ Coastal GasLink will proceed despite protests

The 670-kilometre pipeline is part of a $40 billion liquefied natural gas project

Extreme cold warning in effect for Stuart-Nechako region

It’s been a cold weekend and the frigid conditions are going to… Continue reading

Canada to bolster screening of central China passengers for virus at 3 airports

Additional measures will include messaging on arrivals screens in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver

B.C. society calls out conservation officer after dropping off bear cub covered in ice

Ice can be seen in video matted into emaciated bear cub’s fur

Calls for dialogue as Coastal GasLink pipeline polarizes some in northern B.C.

Coastal GasLink is building the 670-kilometre pipeline from British Columbia’s northeast to Kitimat on the coast

Closed mills, housing surge support a positive forecast for lumber industries

B.C. lumber producers have closed mills accounting for 18% of province’s capacity, RBC report says

Good Samaritan pays part of rent for B.C. woman facing eviction in can-collecting dispute

Zora Hlevnjak, 76, supplements her pension by collecting cans and receiving public donations

Kelowna’s ‘Baby Mary’ finds biological parents after more than 30 years

Geneologist and DNA test helped her connect with her biological parents

Kelowna hotel to award couples for baby-making with Nooner deal

The deal includes a free stay every Valentine’s Day for the next 18 years

‘Scariest boat ride of my life’: Passengers trapped by ice on rocky B.C. ferry sailing

The Nimpkish docked in Bella Coola on Jan.12 coated in a thick layer of ice

B.C. pair ordered to pay $55,000 for oil tank discovered four years after selling home

Judge says defendants breached contract, despite being unaware of tank until basement flooded

Most Read