A woman was shot by police officers executing multiple arrest warrants in the Wilmer area Thursday morning, though she was not one of the raid’s intended targets.
Law enforcement officials have since identified the woman as 19-year-old Ann Marie Rylee. She was struck multiple times and was transported to University Hospital.
The operation, which was organized by the narcotics unit of the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office [MCSO], focused on several previously identified suspects and had warrants for their arrests. A multi-agency fugitive task force that included U.S. Marshals, Baldwin County Sheriff’s deputies and Homeland Security personnel assisted in the raids, and local media was invited to ride along during the operation.
After issuing one arrest warrant earlier in the morning, officers in the group Lagniappe was traveling with arrived at 11223 Old Moffett Road shortly after 6:20 a.m.
Upon exiting their vehicles, officers immediately confronted and detained two male subjects — one of whom was initially believed to be a target of the operation. One of the subjects, Rylee’s fiance, later told reporters he was taking out the trash as police arrived.
After both men were detained, officers attempted to enter the home through a side door beneath a garage when they encountered a female believed to be Rylee. It’s unclear what exactly led to shots being fired, but officers said the woman was holding a weapon and did not comply with multiple orders to drop it.
Rylee’s finance said she “might have grabbed a shotgun” that was in the living room because she thought someone was breaking into the house but wasn’t sure if she had a gun. At the time of the shooting, he and the other male detained by police were outside of the house in the driveway.
Officers were heard saying “gun” and then giving someone verbal instructions to “drop the gun” several times before two members of the task force opened fire. Those commands were also reportedly captured in video taken by NBC 15 photojournalist Jeremiah Cain.
It appeared the officers who fired the shots were working with the task force, but employed by the Baldwin County Sheriff’s office and the Department of Homeland Security Investigations. However, representatives of those agencies have yet to confirm any details about the shooting.
Because of the agencies involved, Alabama’s State Bureau of Investigation was called in to investigate the shooting.
MCSO has since confirmed that the target of the warrant authorities were attempting to execute when Rylee was shot was actually already in police custody at Mobile County Metro Jail.
According to spokesperson Lori Myles, the warrant was intended for Nicholas McLeod, who records indicate was arrested by MCSO deputies for possessing pre-cursor chemicals a day before.
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