Prince George’s County officer shoots man at liquor store

A Prince George’s County, Maryland, police officer shot and seriously injured a man just outside a liquor store on New Hampshire Avenue on Sunday night, police said.

Police said the victim of the shooting, a Hispanic man, is in serious but stable condition. The man’s injuries are non-life threatening.

Interim Police Chief Hector Velez said the man came into the liquor store around 6:45 p.m. and started arguing with other customers, and that the man was already banned from the store for similar behavior. Velez said store management asked an off-duty, part-time police officer near the store to direct the man to leave.

The officer, who was in uniform, instructed the man to leave and he did, but Velez said the man came back shortly after. The officer told the man to leave again, but this time, the man started walking toward the officer and pulled out a knife, Velez said.

The officer pulled a handgun and told the man to drop the knife, but Velez said the man instead charged the officer. That’s when the officer fired three shots, striking the man in his lower-left side, Velez said.

Velez said the incident was caught on the store’s security cameras and shows the suspect pulling a knife and charging toward the officer. The officer involved had not been issued a body-worn camera.

Velez said Prince George’s County Police is investigating the shooting, and the involved officer, who was uninjured, was placed on administrative leave.

Velez said based on the evidence he has reviewed, the shooting was “absolutely” justified.

Below is a map of where the incident happened.

Thomas Robertson

Thomas Robertson is an Associate Producer and Web Writer/Editor at WTOP. After graduating in 2019 from James Madison University, Thomas moved away from Virginia for the first time in his life to cover the local government beat for a small daily newspaper in Zanesville, Ohio.

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