2 gang members detained after police-involved shooting at NC coast

The area where the shooting and brief standoff took place on Wednesday. WECT photo

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) — Two validated gang members are in custody after a shooting involving a Wilmington police detective Wednesday afternoon.

According to Cathryn Lindsay, spokesperson for the Wilmington Police Department, two detectives with the Special Investigations Division conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle near the intersection of North 23rd and Chestnut streets around 3:35 p.m.

Assistant Chief Jim Verrone said the detectives were investigating gang activity in the area and the occupants of the vehicle were validated gang members.

When the vehicle stopped, the passenger got out and pointed a gun in the direction of one of the officers. An officer then fired their gun at the suspect.

Lindsay said one of the suspects took off on foot towards the Creekwood community while the other suspect was taken into custody at the scene.

The second suspect barricaded himself in a home on Emory Street. After a brief standoff with police, the suspect surrendered without incident.

Both suspects have been taken into custody for questioning but have not been arrested or charged.

Verrone said no injuries were reported in the shooting and the investigation is on-going.

District Attorney Ben David said when his office was notified of the shooting, he responded to the scene. Afterward, he briefly spoke with reporters about the incident.

“The community should not take away any negative inference from my being here as this is something that guarantees truth, transparency, and trust in all cases,” David explained. “I’m confident criminal charges may be forthcoming against these verified gang members and for that reason it’s going to be a pending matter that I cannot further comment on.”

Law enforcement also investigated a shooting in the 300 block of Henry Street that happened about 30 minutes prior. It’s unclear if the two shootings are related. No injuries were reported in that shooting, either.

Rachel Freeman Elementary, Snipes Elementary, and Mosley Performance Learning Center were issued shelter in places during both shootings. They have since been lifted.

Copyright 2016 WECT. All rights reserved.

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