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Tacoma Police officer shoots, critically injures panhandler on East Side

Post by Rob Carson / The News Tribune on June 29, 2013 at 4:38 pm with No Comments »
June 29, 2013 10:32 pm
Tacoma Police investigate the scene of an officer-involved shooting Saturday. (Liz Wishaw, staff photographer)
Tacoma Police investigate near the scene of an officer-involved shooting Saturday. (Liz Wishaw, staff photographer)

A Tacoma Police officer shot and critically injured a panhandler Saturday following an altercation in East Tacoma.

According to police, the man was panhandling near the intersection of East 28th Street and Portland Avenue.

When a TPD officer stopped at about 3:15 p.m. and told the man to move, he resisted, police spokesman Loretta Cool said.

Cool said the man attacked the officer, striking her in the arm with a pipe-like object. The officer attempted to subdue him with a Taser, Cool said, but it didn’t work. When the man continued his attack, Cool said, the officer shot him with her handgun.

The man was taken to Tacoma General Hospital where he is in critical condition.

Cool said the officer, a female with six years experience on the force, was also taken to a hospital with an injured arm.

The victim has not been identified, but police say he’s a white male in his 30’s. His bicycle, loaded with possessions was left at the scene.

Police, who had cordoned off part of Portland Avenue and the freeway exit ramp most of Saturday afternoon, re-opened the off-ramp  by about 10: 30 p.m.

(Reporting from the scene by News Tribune staff writer Lewis Kamb)

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