Milwaukee, WI – The suspect accused of shooting a Milwaukee police officer multiple times and stealing the officer’s patrol car was out on bond and had several open felony cases at the time of the brutal attack, according to court documents.
The incident occurred at approximately 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 27, when 26-year-old Milwaukee Police Officer Herbert Davis responded to the area of North 21st Street and St. Paul Avenue to conduct a welfare check on a man who was slumped over in a car, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
When Officer Davis approached the man, later identified as 23-year-old Jetrin Rodthong, the suspect pulled out a gun and opened fire on him, Milwaukee Police Chief Jeffrey Norman told reporters.
Rodthong then jumped into the wounded officer’s patrol car and sped off.
Bystanders rushed to Officer Davis’ aid and helped him until Milwaukee Fire Department paramedics arrived at the scene, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
Officer Davis was rushed to Froedtert Hospital wish gunshot wounds to his abdomen and shoulder, WISN reported.
Police said Rodthong crashed into another vehicle at the intersection of North 17th Street and West Clybourn and fled the scene on foot, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
He was arrested about a half-block away from the crash.
Investigators said they located Rodthong’s gun inside the wrecked patrol car.
The driver of the vehicle he crashed into was transported to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
Rodthong was also transported to a hospital for treatment, but has since been released, FOX News reported.
According to court records, the suspect has multiple felony cases pending against him dating back to 2020, to include bail jumping, resisting or obstructing officers, drug possession, and driving or operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent, among others.
He was released on $30,000 bond for those offenses, but skipped out on his plea hearing, resulting in a warrant being issued for his arrest, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
The warrant was still active when Rodthong shot Officer Davis.
The MPD is leading the investigation into the incident.
Officer Davis was released from the hospital on Jan. 28, less than 24 hours after being shot repeatedly, WISN reported.
A crowd of family members and fellow officers were waiting for him when he exited the hospital.
“I thank everyone, all my brothers and sisters, for the love and support that I’ve been given today,” Officer Davis told those who gathered, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
The seven-year MPD veteran said he is especially thankful to all of the Good Samaritans who rushed to his aid after he was shot.
“I’m so thankful and grateful to them,” he said. “It means a lot and to know that, the citizens love us too, and as much as we help the community, they’ll help us as well. It really means a lot.”
Milwaukee Police Association (MPA) President Andrew Wagner said Officer Davis acted heroically throughout his interaction with Rodthong, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
“Heroic is the first word that comes to mind,” Wagner said. “This is an officer who was by himself, he went and tried to check on somebody who was in medical distress to see how the guy was doing.”
“He was not playing a law enforcement role, but a caretaker role,” he added, “but this is the response this violent criminal had.”
Rodthong’s sister, Linda Rodthong, said her brother has bipolar disorder and substance abuse issues, but that he has refused help from his family, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
“He knows he has problems,” she told the paper. “He didn’t want the help.”