Two officers from the Prichard Police Department shot and wounded a man Monday night after initiating vehicle pursuit that ended on Jessie Street in Mobile.
According to a press release from the PPD, two patrol officers observed a burgundy Mitsubishi Mirage fail to stop at several stop signs on Monday evening before attempting to conduct a traffic stop. They say the car was being driven by 48-yr-old Levon Lee Anderson of Mobile.
Police claim the driver initially appeared to pull the vehicle over. However, after opening the driver side door, he continued to drive west on 1st Avenue and eventually into the Mobile Police Department’s jurisdiction.
According to PPD, the driver later pulled over after turning onto Jessie Street in Mobile, but as officers exited their vehicle, the suspect — believed to be Anderson — put his vehicle into reverse and backed into the officers’ patrol vehicle. Police say the car struck the bumper and nearly hit the officers themselves.
“At that time, both officers drew their duty weapons and fired several times at and in the fleeing subject’s vehicle,” the press release reads. “In doing so, the driver was struck multiple times but still managed to speed off down Jessie Street where he then came to a stop at the intersection of Collins Avenue. The driver exited the vehicle and attempted to flee the scene on foot but soon collapsed in a nearby yard.”
Police identified Anderson as the suspect. He was transported to a local hospital for medical treatment. An update on his current condition has not yet been made available, but public records indicate he has not been transferred to the Mobile County Metro Jail.
In its statement, the PPD said: “it is still undetermined why Anderson did not stop when officers initiated their emergency equipment during the traffic stop.” The press release also made no mention of any drugs or weapons being found in the car.
The Mobile County Sheriff’s Office has since taken over the case for further investigation. MCSO spokeswoman Lori Myles said detectives are still in the early stages of the investigation but are interviewing all parties involved.
It isn’t uncommon for MCSO to assist, or take point, in these types of investigations, as the Prichard Police Department has historically not had an internal affairs unit. MCSO recently conducted a criminal investigation into PPD Officer Johnathan Murphy, who shot and killed an unarmed man near his home on Nov. 18, 2017.
The victim was later identified as 56-year-old Lawrence Hawkins.
Asked about the status of that case, MCSO spokeswoman Lori Myles said that it had since been turned over the Mobile County District Attorney’s Office but still hasn’t gone before a grand jury. Lagniappe was not immediately able to confirm the status of Murphy’s case with DA’s office on Tuesday.