A man who had been released from prison less than a month ago opened fire on Camden police officers and led them on a chase through a network of alleys yesterday morning before he was gunned down, authorities said.
A five-year veteran of the Camden police force fatally shot Braxton Lane, 28, multiple times in the 1100 block of Kenwood Avenue, in the city's Parkside section.
Investigators recovered a semiautomatic 9mm handgun, which they said Lane used to fire on officers around 3:10 a.m.
The shoot-out happened just blocks from another shooting that claimed the life of a Parkside man on Friday.
Police are investigating to see whether Lane was connected to that killing, in which Tyree R. Kelly, 27, was gunned down on Wildwood Avenue.
Lane was released from Camden's Riverfront State Prison on Nov. 21, after serving more than four years for assault, resisting arrest and weapons offenses. He served a previous four-year sentence for aggravated assault from 1998 to 2002.
The shoot-out with police began after an officer spotted a Ford Taurus on Wildwood Avenue that matched the description of a car sought in another investigation. Authorities would not comment on the other investigation.
The officer entered the Taurus' information into his computer and discovered that the vehicle's registration had been suspended, authorities said.
Before the officer could turn on his lights to stop the Taurus, Lane jumped out and ran down an alley between Haddon and Princess Avenues.
The officer followed Lane down the alley in his police cruiser, with Lane firing at least three shots at the car, investigators said.
Lane turned down another alley parallel to Wildwood Avenue as another police cruiser joined the chase. The officers got out of their cars near an intersection with Kenwood Avenue and began chasing Lane.
Lane turned to fire on the officers again on Kenwood Avenue. The officer who began the chase fired multiple times, killing Lane.
The pursuit lasted about four minutes, investigators said.
Officers later found the Taurus at Pershing and Morton Streets, and the driver was questioned. Police do not expect to file any charges against him.
The officer who killed Lane, a 33-year-old who has been with the department since 2002, will be placed on administrative leave while the investigation into the shooting continues. His name was not released.
Lane was shot about three blocks from his home, also on Kenwood Avenue. Kelly, the victim of Friday's shooting, also lived on that street.
Parkside is a sturdy, working-class neighborhood that typically doesn't have to endure the violent crime that grips much of Camden.
The streets were quiet again yesterday afternoon.
"That stuff don't happen around here. It's every blue moon a shooting happens," said a man who lives across from the crime scene. He asked that his name not be used.