Vancouver police officer shot; 2 suspects caught

VANCOUVER, Wash. — A Vancouver police officer was shot during a traffic stop Monday, and two suspects were arrested.

The wounded officer was taken to a hospital and was in critical condition, The Columbian reported. His name has not been released.

The officer, who works in the traffic unit and rides a motorcycle, had stopped a car that had been reported stolen, Lt. Scott Creager told the newspaper. When a dispatcher tried to contact the officer, a citizen came on the radio saying the officer had been shot.

A witness, Jerry Kneppers, said he was in his backyard when he heard five or six gunshots. He said an older woman drove up, got out of her vehicle and began to assist the officer. Kneppers said he saw the woman tie a scarf around the wounded man’s head and neck. Meanwhile, he called 911.

“She’s more of a hero than I am,” Kneppers said. “I called 911 and tried to get someone here as soon as possible to fix this.”

The stolen vehicle left the scene but crashed a short time later on a dead-end street. One suspect was quickly captured and the second suspect was captured after two-hour manhunt, The Columbian reported.

At a news conference Monday afternoon, Police Chief James McElvain thanked those who came to the aid of the wounded officer.

“This is one of the worst nightmares a chief can go through,” McElvain said.

Another officer suffered minor injuries in a traffic accident while responding to the shooting.

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