Alabama officer shot during gunfight at traffic stop

Published 10:41 pm Wednesday, March 11, 2020

An Alabama police sergeant and a suspect were both shot and wounded during an exchange of gunfire Wednesday that followed a traffic stop, authorities said.

Police made three arrests.

Birmingham police Sgt. Rod Mauldin told new outlets West Precinct Sgt. Anthony Wheeler was shot at least once in the leg during a foot chase after the traffic stop.

Authorities didn’t describe the injury to the suspect but said both were being treated and neither injury was life-threatening.

Mauldin said Wheeler and another officer pulled over a vehicle Wednesday afternoon with three people inside, and one of them was suspected of committing auto thefts in the area.

When the car stopped, two people fled from the vehicle and a foot chase began, according to the police spokesman.
During the pursuit, gunfire was exchanged between the suspects and the officers, according to Mauldin.

It wasn’t immediately clear who shot first.

All three were taken into custody. No charges were immediately announced.
Wheeler is a 10-year veteran of the department.

Birmingham FOP President Lt. Richard Haluska said he spoke with Wheeler who “seems to be doing okay.”

The investigation is ongoing.

Wednesday’s shooting was the fifth in which a Birmingham police officer has been wounded in the past 14 months.

The most recent was Det. John Finke, who was shot while responding to a robbery in Woodlawn. He survived.