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Philly officer shoots wanted man after chase

 By Andrew Maykuth
The Philadelphia Inquirer

PHILADELPHIA — A Philadelphia police officer shot and critically wounded a 22-year-old man early yesterday in West Kensington after interrupting a drug transaction and chasing the suspected dealer several blocks on foot, police said.

Two uniformed 25th District officers observed the drug trade at 12:35 a.m. at Ella and East Westmoreland Streets, said Lt. Frank Vanore, a police spokesman. One officer pursued the suspect south on Kip Street to Willard Street, where the suspect ducked into an alley, Vanore said.

In the alley, the suspect "turns and threatens the officer in some manner," Vanore said. The officer fired his gun, striking the suspect in the leg and abdomen.

The suspect, whom police did not identify, was transported to Temple University Hospital and was listed in critical condition, Vanore said. He was charged with aggravated assault, terroristic threats and narcotics violations - crack cocaine was recovered at the scene, Vanore said.

No weapon was recovered.

Neither officer was injured, Vanore said.

Internal Affairs will investigate the shooting, as it does any time an officer fires his or her gun.

Copyright 2008 The Philadelphia Inquirer

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