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Armed suspect shot and injured by officers in Curtis Bay, Baltimore police say

Ava-joye Burnett reports.

Baltimore police shot and injured an armed suspect during a foot chase Tuesday night in Curtis Bay. It was the second time that day police had fired at a suspect.

Around 8:30 p.m. in Curtis Bay Park uniformed police officers saw a man they believed to be armed, police spokesman T.J. Smith said. They chased the man, who ran through the neighborhood. The man, who had a gun, then turned toward police, who shot him, Smith said.

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The man escaped into a waiting car. Smith said shortly after, a man turned up at Harbor Hospital with gunshot wounds, and police believe he is the suspect. The 23-year-old suspect was transferred to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where he had multiple gunshot wounds and was stable and expected to survive.

The driver of the car who dropped off the suspect at the hospital was arrested, police said.

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The suspect was not identified Tuesday night. Smith said police were investigating whether the suspect shot at police.

The officers involved were not injured and were described as a six-year veteran and a three-year veteran. They were proactively policing the areas and were in full uniform, Smith said. Both were placed on routine administrative leave.

Earlier Tuesday an officer fired one shot and struck a refrigerator during a confrontation with two armed men while they were robbing a Northeast Baltimore liquor store, police said. No one was injured and the suspects were arrested.

Police Chief Kevin Davis commended the officers for their actions when confronted by armed gunman, saying he "couldn't be more proud."

"To the Baltimoreans watching tonight, your police department is working hard to protect you and serve you and part of that service and part of that responsibility is to stand in harms way," he said.

Until Tuesday, city police had shot two people this year, killing both. That number is considerably down from previous years; at this time last year, city police had shot eight people, and five at this time in 2015, eight in 2014, and 12 in 2013.

Davis called for tougher measures for gun possession.

"The larger question after this press conference is when is Maryland going to do something about people who choose to arm themselves with firearms," Davis said. "It's a misdemeanor, it's not viewed as a violent crime, our judges don't take it seriously."

Many people congregated outside on Pennington Avenue outside bars and corner stores on the cool evening in Curtis Bay. A crime scene stretched for several blocks and police walked an alley between Filbert and Elmtree streets with flashlights.

Tyler Schwartzman was by the bar Thumpers when he said he heard two shots. He jumped in his car and peeled off, then heard sirens.

"My stomach dropped," he said.

Kyle Watson, 61, was sleeping when he heard what he thought were fireworks. Neighbors had been setting them off all night.

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But his daughter then went in to see if he had heard what happened, and he looked outside to see police everywhere.

Watson said he was concerned about crime and drug activity in the area.

"The crime is really bad out here," he said from his Pennington Avenue stoop.

"We need more police out here. If we had more police we would have less crime."

Baltimore Sun reporter Kevin Rector contributed to this report.

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