South Jersey Officer Shot, Suspect Wounded During Struggle - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

South Jersey Officer Shot, Suspect Wounded During Violent Struggle

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Investigators say it was around 4 a.m. when Delanco Police Officer Francisco Ambrifi responded to a disorderly person radio call on the 400 block of Delaware Avenue in this riverfront community. That's when he got into a violent struggle with a suspect that ended in gunfire.

"My husband did hear the gunshots last night. He knew this went off . He heard it about 4:30 in the morning," Frances Bennett told Fox 29.

"This is very unusual for something like this to happen,' said neighbor Bob Holler.

"This gives me the chills," another neighbor said.

The unnamed 21 yr old suspect was hit at least twice in the chest, the veteran officer shot once in the knee. He was raced to a nearby hospital, then taken to Cooper University Hospital's trauma unit in Camden. The suspect also went to Cooper. Both were listed in stable  condition. The shooting stunned neighbors here.

"It's terrible for something like that to happen, in this neighborhood especially," Holler said.

"We're very concerned being that we lived here for like 30 years, never heard anything like this, was always a quiet neighborhood," Bennett said.

Delanco is a quiet, riverfront  town. There's only half a dozen officers or so in the township police department . Shootings are a rare thing here. This one had folks in this community upset not only for the officer, but also for their neighborhood..

"I can't imagine that. It's like television comes home to roost," said Delanco resident David Baldwin.

"Nothing like this ever happened," Holler added.

Crime scene investigators spent the day searching and pulling evidence from the shooting scene, including clothing, a police radio, a flashlight and sneakers. Police would not say how many weapons were recovered on scene or if a weapon other than the officer's was  involved.

"I probably know the officer being that this is my town for 30 years," Bennett explained. "I hope he's okay. I really appreciate him doing his job. Coming out here and risking his life for something like that."

Police would not release the name of the suspect saying he had not yet been charged in the case.

Delanco Police released a statement stating that Ambrifi is a 16-year veteran of the force who was married just four weeks ago.  He is also a former U.S. Marine. 

Ambrifi released the following statement late Tuesday afternoon:

"On behalf of myself and my entire family, I thank everyone for the outpouring of prayers and concern. I want to assure everyone that I'm fine and the doctors are telling me I should make a full recovery. Your continued thoughts and prayers are greatly appreciated."

The shooting remains under investigation.

Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 2, President Peter Alfiniti said Ambrifi is "expected to recover from his leg wound 100 percent."

 

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