NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A New Orleans police officer responding to the sound of gunfire was ambushed by a subject who had just killed a man in Gentilly, according to the NOPD.
The incident happened at about 5:15 p.m. near the 3900 block of Hamburg Street. The officer's injuries are minor.
According to NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison, 11-year veteran Officer Kenneth Gill was off-duty and working a private paid detail at the Columbia Parc apartments when he heard gunfire. The 48-year-old officer went in the direction of the sound and discovered 28-year-old Ryjhoun Smith fatally shot and another man running from the scene. The shooting suspect got into a white SUV with at least one other person inside and fired at Gill with what is believed to be an assault rifle. One of the bullets struck the officer's windshield as he pursued the SUV to Paris Avenue and the interstate. The officer was not hit but sustained minor injures from shrapnel.
The suspect's vehicle was last see headed toward Metairie, police said.
Officer Gill was taken to University Medical Center and is listed in good condition. He is currently assigned to the NOPD First District as the Quality of Life Officer.
About an hour and a half after the shooting, police responded to the scene of a torched car that matched the description of the getaway car. A Cadillac Escalade was found burning in the 8700 block of Pear Street about four miles away from the murder scene in Gentilly. Police have not confirmed if it is the getaway car.
Homicide Detective Clinton Givens is in charge of the investigation and can be contacted at (504) 658-5300.
Citizens with information that can help solve this crime are asked to call Crimestoppers at 822-1111 or toll-free 1-877-903-STOP. You could receive a cash reward of up to $2,500 for the information leading only to the arrest, except on homicides, where Crimestoppers will pay half of the reward upon the arrest and half on the indictment of the responsible person(s). You do not have to give your name nor testify to receive the reward but you must contact Crimestoppers directly with your information. Citizens can also submit an anonymous tip online to Crimestoppers at www.crimestoppersgno.org.