ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – An 18-year-old man, Vonderrit Myers, is dead after police say he fired shots at an off-duty officer and the officer returned fire.
The officer involved shooting occurred in the 4100 block of Shaw in South St. Louis around 8 p.m. Wednesday. The officer was working for a private security firm hired by the neighborhood at the time of the shooting.
Secondary employment allows police officers to work security in uniform and carry their department-issued weapons, says a release from the department. St. Louis police officers work secondary for securities companies, business establishments and sporting events.
The officer, while not on duty for the department, operates in the capacity as a St. Louis police officer and still has the same responsibilities and power to arrest, the release says.
Police say an off-duty police officer approached four men in a car and the men ran.
The officer followed. Then police say one of the men ran into a gangway and the officer followed.
When the officer approached there was a struggle. Police say during the altercation the man’s sweatshirt came off it was clear to the officer that the man had a gun. The man ran up a hill and reportedly turned, pulled a gun and fired at the officer.
According to Police Chief Sam Dotson, who briefed the media at 1 a.m. on Thursday, the man fired three rounds at the officer and continued to fire, but his gun jammed. The officer then returned fire, shooting 17 rounds, striking and killing the man.
Police say the Myers’ 9mm handgun was recovered at the scene. The gun was reported stolen on Sept. 26.