VIDEO: Three bystanders hit by police in New Orleans shoot-out earlier this month
NEW ORLEANS - Three bystanders wounded in a shoot-out between officers and a suspected robber were struck by police, NOPD announced Thursday.
Five innocent onlookers were injured in New Orleans' Central Business District Feb. 17 when a suspected robber being questioned by investigators opened fire. That suspect, identified as Reginald Bursey, was killed in the exchange with police.
According to the New Orleans Advocate, police confirmed Thursday two of those victims were struck by Bursey, but the remaining three were hit by police officers who returned fire while chasing the suspect.
Bursey, a Texas native, was reportedly tied to a Houston-based gang and was suspected in two recent armed robberies reported in New Orleans.
NOPD superintendent Shaun Ferguson said Bursey was "a very dangerous and desperate individual willing to do whatever it took to evade capture" and reiterated that officers only returned gunfire after being shot at first.
“It is so unfortunate that our officers were forced into this violent confrontation – which was initiated by the suspect – and five of our citizens were hurt," Ferguson said. "That has been the most difficult part for our officers during this situation.”
Ferguson said police would continue to support the victims.
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