10/31/07 The 3rd officer down this in Philly week, he was shot in the head at Dunkin Donuts today.
Officer Very Critical After Shooting Suspect Remains at Large
EAST OAK LANE Philadelphia police have identified the officer who was shot in the head Wednesday morning during a holdup. An army of officers is searching for the suspect, who remains on the loose. Dozens of schools nearby were placed under lockdown.
James Golden, chief of security for Philadelphia schools, told Action News that the schools under lockdown were to be dismissing as per their normal schedules. During the the lockdown, students and staff were not allowed to leave the buildings, and nobody was allowed to enter. There were no incidents or sightings of the suspect near any of the schools, according to Golden.
Authorities have identified the officer as Charles Cassidy, a veteran with 25 years on the Philadelphia police force, during a news conference shortly after 12:30 p.m.
The officer is being treated at Einstein Hospital. Philadelphia Cardinal Justin Rigali is at the hospital meeting with the family.
The officer is married. His wife is at the hospital. He has three children. Two of them are in college, one is in high school.
Investigators plan to show a video of the shooting in the near future, according to Philadelphia Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson who held a news conference shortly after noon.
The suspect apparently went back to the fallen officer and took the officer's gun before fleeing the robbery scene at the Dunkin Donut store. Johnson said the officer, whose job was to patrol businesses and look out for robberies, walked in on a robbery in progress at the Dunkin Donuts at 66th and Broad.
The officer was rushed into emergency surgery around 11:15 a.m. The bullet went through the officer's brain, the commissioner said. Cassidy, a 25-year police veteran, was taken to a hospital, where doctors were "doing everything they can to save his life," Johnson said.
The officer, who was shot in the forehead, came out of surgery at about 1:30 p.m. but remained in "extremely critical" condition, said Alexis Moore, a spokeswoman for Albert Einstein Medical Center.
Police now say they are looking for a Ford Crown Victoria in connection with the shooting. They are searching for a black man, about 5'11" and roughly 20 years old. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, tan khaki pants and tan or white boots. He is heavy-set according to investigators. They have now said that he has a spider tattoo on his left hand.
Police are going through the neighborhood, knocking on doors and searching through dumpsters looking for the suspect. A police helicopter is also searching above the neighborhood.
"This is a very, very sad day," Mayor John Street said after meeting with the officer's family at the hospital.
Street repeated his challenge to city, state and federal lawmakers to change the gun laws.
"There are just too many guns," said Street.