Video released of Gastonia officers fatally shooting suspect following alleged kidnapping
Officers say they were responding to a kidnapping call.
GASTONIA, N.C. (WBTV) - The Gastonia Police Department is investigating an officer-involved shooting that happened Wednesday afternoon.
Police say they were responding to a kidnapping call around 12:30 p.m. in the 400 block of North Edgemont Avenue after a man took children, whom he was not supposed to have, from Precious Moments Childcare Center.
Police were able to safely locate the children inside of a home, and were able to locate the suspect using a vehicle description.
While attempting to arrest the suspect, he fled in a vehicle, striking and injuring an officer.
Multiple officers then shot at the suspect, later identified as 21-year-old Jason Lipscomb, who was pronounced dead at the scene.
A doorbell camera video was released Thursday showing a 12-second clip of the encounter. In the clip, you can see at least eight people, some of them law enforcement, running towards a parked car. The car backs up quickly out of a parking spot, appearing to hit several people before starting to drive away. That’s when gunfire can be heard.
The children were not inside the car when the shots were fired.
The officer was taken to an area hospital with serious injuries but is expected to be OK.
As per standard protocol, the officer will be placed on paid administrative leave upon his release from the hospital.
A mother living in this neighborhood that I talked to says while police are not usually in this neighborhood and people are not usually fighting on their front lawns, she understands why it was so emotional. Especially when thinking about how she would react with her own kids.
”No I didn’t…I haven’t heard anything about that. That’s insane cause that’s my kids and I wouldn’t want nothing to happen to them. I never hear anything out here. Ever,” says Jennifer Shoemaker.
WBTV talked to a few people who were standing outside watching as police were investigating. They shared with me what seeing these moments was like for them.
”I never hear anything like this. Ever. I men everyone out here pretty much stays to themselves. It’s never been any kind of anything out here. Police aren’t down here or nothing like that so yeah,” says Shoemaker.
”Bababababababa. Gunshots. He had to do what he had to do to get away I guess. Sad to say for the police officer,” says Sunny Thomas.
The State Bureau of Investigation is investigating. Gastonia Police Department’s Bureau of Internal Affairs will conduct an investigation into the officers’ actions.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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