Forest City, NC – A police officer is in critical condition and the gunman who shot him is in custody after a shooting on Monday morning in Forest City.
Forest City Police Chief Chris LeRoy said officers responded to a call about an “armed and dangerous” suspicious person on Hill Street at about 8:30 a.m. on Aug. 9, WYFF reported.
Chief LeRoy said that suspect was identified as 20-year-old Akeil Kelis Omar Franklin, who had outstanding warrants from the North Carolina Probation Department.
The chief said that when officers arrived on the scene, they found Franklin in the woods nearby, WYFF reported.
When officers tried to talk to the suspect about his warrants, he pulled out a gun and opened fire on the officers, according to Chief LeRoy.
Officers returned fire but Franklin wasn’t hit, WYFF reported.
However, Chief LeRoy said one of the Forest City police officers on the scene had been shot multiple times by Franklin.
The wounded officer – who has since been identified as Forest City Police Officer Jamie Hill – was airlifted to Spartanburg Regional Hospital, WYFF reported.
Chief LeRoy said that Officer Hill had been shot between his ballistic vest and other protective gear.
The police chief said the officer has undergone at least one surgery so far and remained in critical but stable condition, WYFF reported.
He said Officer Hill is a three-year veteran of the Forest City Police Department.
Prior to joining the police department, Officer Hill served in the U.S. military, according to Chief LeRoy.
A manhunt was launched for Franklin and law enforcement officers from multiple agencies and jurisdictions assisted, WYFF reported.
#UPDATE: Forest City Police Officer Jamie Hill is in critical but stable cond. after being shot this morning. He was hit in the abdomen even though he was wearing vest. Manhunt continues. $10K reward is being offered for info. on Akeil Franklin's whereabouts. Last seen on foot. pic.twitter.com/SqYVMahA05
— Cody Alcorn (@CodyAlcorn) August 9, 2021
The U.S. Marshals Service immediately offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to his apprehension.
Franklin was captured at about 4 p.m. on Monday, WYFF reported.
He has been charged with three counts of attempted first-degree murder, assault on law enforcement with a firearm, and three counts of resisting a public officer.
The suspect also had outstanding warrants for common-law robbery and assault inflicting serious bodily injury when he shot Officer Hill, WYFF reported.