ST. LOUIS — A St. Louis police officer and a suspect were shot Friday afternoon in St. Louis, according to police. One officer suffered from a hand injury during a struggle with the suspect.
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department's Real Time Crime Center confirmed an "officer in need of aid" call was put out shortly before 4:30 p.m. after an officer was shot in the 5700 block of Kingsbury Place.
Public Information Officer Evita Caldwell said that the officer who was shot was conscious and breathing when taken to the hospital by another officer. The officer's condition was described as "stable." Police said that the officer shot was reportedly conscious and alert as of Friday evening.
The suspect was taken to another area hospital to be treated for his injuries, including a cut hand. He is also in stable condition and is in custody.
According to a police source, a woman called police to check on her 71-year-old brother. She said he wasn't answering his phone and she could hear it ringing in his apartment. His sister told police he was "experiencing delusions."
Citing preliminary information, just after 3 p.m. the department said officers responded to an apartment for a mental health-related situation and tried to engage the suspect for about 30 minutes until EMS workers arrived.
St. Louis Police Chief Robert Tracy said during a press conference outside of Barnes-Jewish Hospital that EMS tried to evaluate the suspect, who was "not compliant with his medication."
As officers were lifting the suspect, who had his arms folded in front of him, he fired shots from a gun that was concealed in his pocket, striking one 44-year-old officer in the upper shoulder and bicep.
Officers struggled with the suspect inside a bathroom and one of them, a 38-year-old, cut his arm on a piece of porcelain from a broken toilet. A third officer suffered a head injury but refused medical treatment at the scene.
"I got scared and ran out to our parking lot," Jillian Adkins, who lives at the apartment building where the shooting took place, said.
"I happened to see a lot of officers running in. I've never seen anything like this before," Adkins said.
"I was outside and saw when the officers brought that man out and arrested him," another tenant told 5 On Your Side.
A second suspect was taken into custody.
Several police vehicles were seen gathered outside Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis Friday afternoon, where two officers was taken for treatment. There was also a police presence outside of Saint Louis University Hospital, where the suspect was taken for treatment.
St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones provided a statement regarding the three officers injured, which reads:
"Praying for our SLMPD officers injured this afternoon in Skinker-DeBaliviere and thankful to hear they are in stable condition. I have been briefed by Chief Tracy on the incident, and SLMPD will continue to offer updates as they develop."
This incident is the third officer-involved shooting since Tracy took office in early January.
"This city like every other city is struggling with people who carry guns and actually use those guns and commit things against other people such as murders," he said during the press conference. "We have 44 murders in the city right now, but we're down about 15-20% from where we were last year. We're about 30% from where we were about two years ago."
Tracy said the Force Investigative Unit with the St. Louis Police Department is handing the investigation at the crime scene.
"This is the second time I've been to this hospital [when] two other officers were shot two months ago," added the police chief.
"Thankfully this was not worse ... it could've been a lot worse," Tracy said.
Correction: An earlier version of this report stated that two St. Louis police officers sustained cuts to their hands. A public information officer later said only one officer sustained cuts to his hands.
Photos: 3 officers injured, suspect shot in St. Louis
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Resources for crime victims:
If you have been a victim of a crime or know someone who has been, 5 On Your Side has compiled a list of resources.
The Crime Victim Center of St. Louis has multiple programs to support victims of crime. Crime Victim Center’s programs range from direct services to crime victims as well as “creating awareness and change within the systems they encounter.”
Life Outside of Violence "helps those harmed by stabbing, gunshot or assault receive the treatment, support and resources they need to find alternatives to end the cycle of violence."
The Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis has the Neighborhood Healing Network, which serves people who have experienced crime, violence or been the victim of an incident that caused trauma.
Cure Violence is an international organization that is present in a handful of St. Louis neighborhoods. Violence interrupters are trained to deescalate violent situations within their own communities.