ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Two police officers have been shot near Bellefountaine and Crete in North St. Louis County near Bellefountaine Neighbors. Police report that the officers are OK, thanks to their bulletproof vests. They are reportedly conscious and talking.
The suspect in the shooting ran from the scene and has barricaded himself in a home in the area, which is currently surrounded by police officers.
Police say the officers involved were responding to an earlier report of shots fired in the area. They approached a house to question a man believed to be connected to the earlier call and that’s when eyewitness Steve Jones tells KMOX that a struggle ensued.
Jones tells KMOX’s Michael Calhoun that around 7:30am he saw three officers talking to the suspect outside and then there was a struggle, with police attempting to get the man to the ground. He says the suspect was able to get away from the officers and that he saw the officers use pepper spray and possibly a taser.
“As soon as he (the suspect) got to his feet, he pulled out a gun and started shooting at police,” Jones says.
He tells Calhoun he believes he heard the suspect fire seven to nine shots from what appeared to be a handgun and did not see the officers return fire.
“I thought they (the officers) were all hit…None of them got off the ground and when I called 911 they were still on the ground,” Jones says.
As an eyewitness not far from where the shooting took place, Jones says he feared for his own safety.
“I was in the car and I just stopped and I thought, ‘Please don’t turn this way. Please don’t turn this way,'” Jones explains.
The suspect was known to police and is believed to have assault weapons in the home.
The Hazelwood School District is currently on a soft lockdown as a result of the standoff in the area.