Va. officer shot behind church; saved by vest

By Mike Holtzclaw and Danielle Zielinski
James City Daily Press

JAMES CITY COUNTY, Va. — A James City County police officer was shot early this morning but was spared from serious injury because he was wearing a bullet-proof vest.

Composite of suspect in shooting of a James City County police officer. (Photo courtesy of James City County Police Department / December 17, 2007)
Police spokesman Mike Spearman said officer Andrew Baker was on a foot patrol on Pocahontas Trail around 3:19 a.m. when he heard voices behind the Grove Outreach Church. When he went to investigate, he was shot in the abdomen by a person described as a white male.

There is no further information on the suspect, but police released a composite sketch based on Baker's description of the man who shot him.

Spearman said Baker "returned fire multiple times," but the gunman fled on foot. Spearman said there was no indication that any of Baker's shots hit the gunman, but local hospitals have been alerted to the incident.

"They're checking all area hospitals," he said. "No one's turned up yet."

Another person who was in the area with the gunman also fled on foot.

Because he was wearing a bullet-proof vest, Baker sustained only some bruising to his abdomen. He was treated at Sentara WIlliamsburg Regional Hospital and released.

Copyright 2007 The James City Daily Press

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