By Vandana Rambaran | Fox News
At least six Philadelphia police officers were shot, reportedly grazed in the head, in an ongoing shootout in the city’s Nicetown neighborhood on Wednesday afternoon that has been unfolding for almost three hours.
Three officers were rushed to Temple University Hospital, officials told Fox 29.
Three other officers were taken to Einstein Hospital, at least one of them was shot in the arm. All six officers were in stable condition and being treated for non-life threatening injuries.
Philadelphia police staging as they respond to the active shooting situation. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Two other officers, including a police sergeant, were injured in an accident related to the emergency response and were being treated for non-life threatening injuries. One suspect was in custody.
High-ranking police officials said two officers with the Narcotics Strike Force were serving a warrant at a multifamily home — in what may have been a drug-related offense — when a shooter opened fire at the home. The two officers were barricaded in separate rooms with as many as four suspects.
Hostage negotiators and a SWAT team were on the scene.
“Officers are attempting to communicate with the shooter; imploring him to surrender and avoid further injuries,” Philadelphia Police Department Sgt. Eric Gripp tweeted.
Officers are attempting to communicate with the shooter; imploring him to surrender and avoid further injuries.6497:06 PM – Aug 14, 2019
Hundreds of rounds of gunfire could be heard although the weapon being used by the shooter remained unknown.
Four women who were on the second floor of the building as the shootout continued were rescued by police officers and led to safety.
“I thank God for these cops. They’re good people. Don’t say nothing bad about them, they kept us safe the whole time,” one of the women told CBS3.
President Trump was made aware of the unfolding scene in Philadelphia, according to White House Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley.
Law enforcement with a gun drawn in the Nicetown neighborhood of Philadelphia.
“The President has been briefed on the shooting in Philadelphia and continues to monitor the situation,” Gidley said.
The situation was being described as an active shooting scene that began around 4:30 p.m.
Officers called for backup frantically saying “shots fired, shots fired at North 15th street.”
Police standing outside a house as they investigated the active shooting situation.
Video footage of the scene showed a massive police presence in the neighborhood as hundreds of responding police officers and police cars from the Philadelphia Police Department as well as special agents from the Philadelphia Field Division blocked off the streets, crouching behind cars, many with their guns drawn, in search of a possible gunman, according to reports by WCAU.
One officer appeared injured and was taken away in a police car. Video also showed two other officers carrying a man and putting them in the back of a police car, according to reports by The Associated Press.
Police were cautioning the community to stay indoors as gunshots continue to ring out in the neighborhood.
Gripp tweeted, “Suspect is still firing. STAY OUT OF THE AREA.”
Suspect is still firing. STAY OUT OF THE AREA2,0565:57 PM – Aug 14, 2019
Philadelphia has been riddled with drug-related crime with several major busts occurring since the beginning of 2019.
U.S. officials seized over $1 billion worth of cocaine in June from a ship at a Philadelphia port, in a bust that the U.S. attorney’s office called one of the largest in American history.
One month later, law enforcement officials seized six kilos of heroin and fentanyl, two kilos of cocaine, five handguns, one rifle, $200,000 cash, as well as other drug paraphernalia after a 3-month long wiretap investigation on the Kensignton neighborhood in Philadelphia.
In March, drug dogs sniffed out 1,185 pounds of cocaine worth about $38 million, a bust that was recognized at the time as the city’s largest seizure of the drug in more than two decades.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates. The Associated Press contributed to this report. Vandana Rambaran is a reporter covering news and politics at foxnews.com.
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