Inquirer photographer finds a shootout scene painted over

Every Monday, we present a gallery of recent pictures taken by our staff photojournalists — and tell you the story behind one of them. This week staff photographer Heather Khalifa revisits the scene of August’s police shooting and standoff.

Police officers look at the house where a shooting standoff in August left six police officers wounded on the 3700 block of North 15th street during a "community day" block party. The house has been boarded up and painted with candles in the window.
HEATHER KHALIFA / Staff Photographer
Police officers look at the house where a shooting standoff in August left six police officers wounded on the 3700 block of North 15th street during a "community day" block party. The house has been boarded up and painted with candles in the window.

“It didn’t even look like the same neighborhood.”

That’s how Inquirer staff photographer Heather Khalifa described a recent visit to the 3700 block of North 15th Street in Tioga, the North Philly neighborhood where six police officers were shot during an August standoff.

Khalifa was there to photograph a block party cosponsored and publicized by the Philadelphia Police Department and the Police Athletic League meant to be a display of goodwill and support following the events two month ago.

But anxiety still permeates residents’ daily lives, some said, despite the block party and other efforts to beautify the neighborhood while residents wait for repairs to damaged homes.

Khalifa said photographers and police officers were “enamored” by the windows of the home where the shootout took place. They had been boarded up and painted over with a scene similar to one you might find in a storybook. Khalifa described it as a reminder that will always be there.

“To me that told the whole story,” she said.

» SEE MORE: Last week’s staff photo gallery and the staff photography page

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