Prosecutor: 'No doubt' gunman was targeting police officers
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — There's "no doubt" a gunman who fired at police in several locations in the state capital, wounding one of them before they shot and killed him, was targeting police officers, a prosecutor said.
Ahmed Aminamin El-Mofty fired at a Harrisburg police officer on Friday afternoon and later at a state trooper, wounding and then pursuing her, Dauphin County District Attorney Ed Marsico said.
"He fired several shots at a Capitol police officer and at a Pennsylvania state police trooper in marked vehicles," Marsico told reporters, flanked by state police, Capitol police and FBI officials.
The gunfire began shortly after 4 p.m. Friday, when the man fired several shots at a state Capitol officer in downtown Harrisburg, striking his car several times and sending one shot "that went very close to hitting him," Marsico said. About 20 or 30 minutes later, he fired several shots at the state trooper, striking her with one of those shots.
The trooper is "doing well," is in good condition and is expected to make a full recovery, Marsico said.
El-Mofty pursued the trooper to a residential neighborhood, where city and state police encountered him.
"He approached them with two handguns ... firing many shots at those police officers," and the officers returned fire, killing him, Marsico said.
El-Mofty had ties to the Middle East and recently traveled there, but the motive for the attack was unknown, Marsico said.
Marsico asked for information from the public about the man, who also had ties to the city and its western suburbs across the Susquehanna River. He declined to comment on whether the man was known to police.
Marsico expressed gratitude to state and local police for bringing a rapid end to an episode he said could have been much worse.
"This could have been a really tragic incidence with this individual firing many shots at police cars in downtown Harrisburg in the midst of rush hour traffic on a Friday afternoon and then coming up here in a residential neighborhood and firing again many shots," he said.