A man armed with a gun, who reportedly fired shots and attempted to gain entry into a Jewish school in Memphis, is now in critical condition after being shot by a police officer during a traffic stop, according to local law enforcement. The incident occurred shortly after midday on Monday when Memphis Police Department received a call about an unidentified man discharging his firearm outside Margolin Hebrew Academy. The police confirmed that no one was injured in the incident.
Assistant Police Chief Don Crowe commended the school for its effective safety procedures, which he said prevented any harm or injury at the scene. The suspect, who had fled the scene in a maroon pickup truck bearing California plates before the arrival of the police, was later located in Bartlett, Tennessee, thanks to a description provided by the school.
According to the police report, officers initiated a traffic stop, during which the driver, armed with a handgun, exited the vehicle. An officer from the Memphis Police Department discharged his weapon, hitting the suspect and leaving him critically injured. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is set to investigate the officer-involved shooting.
During a press conference, Crowe stated that it was too early to determine if the incident was a hate crime. However, he expressed his belief that the suspect had intended to cause harm. He said, “I think the suspect was going to harm somebody before the day was over and that our officers were able to intervene and protect the citizens.”
Democratic Representative Steve Cohen, whose district encompasses Memphis, revealed in a statement that the shooter was a former student of Margolin Hebrew Academy and was himself Jewish. The academy is a co-educational institution catering to children from first to eighth grades.