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Officer forced to shoot knife-wielding volunteer firefighter involved in car crash after he refused to comply

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Source: Prince George’s County Fire Dept. Facebook

Meredith Cohn
The Baltimore Sun

A knife-wielding man shot by Anne Arundel County Police on Route 50 Friday night faces charges after the department said he refused to comply with an officer’s orders to drop the weapon.

Anne Arundel police said Saturday that the man is being treated at an area hospital and will be charged with seven counts of assault, reckless endangerment, and related charges. Police said an arrest warrant has been issued but declined to publicly identify him.

Police spokeswoman Sgt. Jackie Davis declined to provide additional details about the man’s injuries or his condition Saturday but said he was shot once.

Police said the shooting took place at about 10 p.m. Friday on eastbound U.S. Route 50 right before Maryland Route 424, also known as Davidsonville Road, in Davidsonville. The county fire department had responded to a call at 9:44 p.m. of a pedestrian possibly struck by a vehicle. When emergency medical responders arrived, they did not find any vehicles that appeared to be involved in an accident, but they were immediately approached by a man they found on the right shoulder of the road.

He pulled out a knife and lunged toward the emergency responders, Sgt. Jackie Davis, a police spokeswoman, said shortly after midnight.

Fire personnel called for police, and county and state police officers soon responded. The suspect failed to comply with the officers’ orders to drop the knife and get on the ground, the department reported on Facebook at about 1 a.m. Saturday.

One of the officers, a 20-year veteran of the department assigned to the Bureau of Patrol, fired one round that hit the man, the post said.

The department identified him Saturday morning only as Cpl. R. Heller. According to public records, Cpl. Russell A. Heller Sr. was hired in 1998 and makes an annual salary of $91,000.

Davis said Saturday she could not answer whether the officer has been involved in previous incidents.

It was unclear whether he was also struck by a vehicle and injured.

Davis did not identify the man and could not provide any description of him.

No police or emergency medical responders were injured, she said.

Davis said officers continue to investigate. Detectives were still at the scene after 1 a.m. Saturday, the post said.

Officials closed all three eastbound traffic lanes and the shoulders, as well as one of three westbound traffic lanes and one shoulder. Davis said the lanes were likely to remain closed overnight, though the Maryland Department of Transportation listed them as open by 10 a.m. Saturday.

This story has been updated.

Baltimore Sun reporter Jessica Anderson contributed to this story.

meredith.cohn@baltsun.com

twitter.com/mercohn

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