A Philadelphia police officer shot at a fleeing burglary suspect yesterday afternoon after the man, armed with a gun, refused the officer's demand to stop, authorities said.
The incident began shortly after 11 a.m. in the 2400 block of North 11th Street, where the officer had responded to a report of a burglary.
The man was seen leaving a building near the Fairhill Apartments and was ordered to stop. Instead, according to police spokesman Lt. Frank Vanore, he pulled a gun and fled in a dark blue van.
The officer fired four times, putting one bullet through the front windshield, two through the driver's side window, and one into metal near the window.
The van crashed into a telephone pole at 11th and Huntingdon Streets, where the driver escaped on foot.
"We don't believe at this time that anybody was injured," Vanore said.
Police spent several hours searching the area for the man. The incident is under investigation by Internal Affairs, which investigates every incident of officers firing their gun.
The shooting comes a week after an officer fatally shot a suspect who pointed a pellet gun at him and refused to put the weapon down after several demands by the officer.
Eleven people have been killed by police this year, compared with 15 people fatally shot in 2007. This year, officers have discharged their weapons 71 times, including accidental discharges and dog shootings. Last year, there were 93 discharges.
Meanwhile, the number of times that police have been shot at has skyrocketed - 195 times this year compared with 41 last year. Two officers were fatally shot this year in the line of duty.