Maryland police said two people are dead after a man fired at them, stole a police cruiser, and then hit a relative with the vehicle as he fled the scene early Tuesday morning.
Prince George County officers responded to calls of a suicidal man with a gun around 1 a.m. in Lanham, Maryland, in a residential neighborhood, Interim Police Chief Hector Velez said during a press conference, WUSA9 reported. The officers said they were met with immediate gunfire at their arrival, and returned fire.
The man was potentially having a mental health crisis at the time, said Velez.
The full press conference was posted to the Prince George County Police Department’s Facebook page.
One officer was still in the car when the shooting started, and he was forced to vacate the vehicle and hide behind another cruiser for cover, Velez said. At this point, the suspect took control of the cruiser, and drove the car up and down the road, and struck and killed a family member, who had been attempting to de-escalate the situation before police arrived, according to authorities. He continued to drive the vehicle until colliding head-on with another police cruiser in a neighboring town of New Carrollton, police said. (RELATED: Police Officer Dies After Shooting Incident Just Outside Of D.C.)
The suspect was taken into custody and transported to a nearby hospital where he was later pronounced dead, Velez said.
Velez also said that while the suspect died of a gun wound, it is unclear at what point the man was shot. WUSA9 stated in their report that the police vehicle the suspect had taken control of had several bullet holes.
None of the Prince George County officers were injured. The New Carrollton officer inside the hit cruiser was taken to the hospital and is expected to be OK, said Velez.
Investigators are still working to determine at what point the suspect was shot.