Wounded officer OK; suspect still at large
by Nikki Wiley
July 12, 2013 04:00 PM | 16431 views | 17 17 comments | 42 42 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Members of the Cobb County Sheriff's Department's Tactical team go into a second floor apartment in the 700 building of the Concord Chase apartment complex in Smyrna. Police say an armed suspect shot a Cobb county officer during a chase.
Members of the Cobb County Sheriff's Department's Tactical team go into a second floor apartment in the 700 building of the Concord Chase apartment complex in Smyrna. Police say an armed suspect shot a Cobb county officer during a chase.
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Cobb officer shot in Smyrna
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SMYRNA — Police and heavily armed SWAT units searched door-to-door at a Smyrna apartment complex for most of the day Friday for a man they believe shot a police officer. But by nightfall they still hadn’t found their suspect.

The man who shot Cobb County Police Officer D. Rogers in the chest at about 1:15 a.m. Friday at Concord Chase Apartments, 300 Hurt Road, remained on the loose Friday evening.

Rogers was protected by a bullet-proof vest and was in good condition recovering at home Friday, Cobb police spokesman Officer Michael Bowman said.

Police say Rogers was patrolling at the complex when he noticed a man standing outside and approached him. The man ran off and Rogers followed on foot.

At some point, police say Rogers was blindsided and shot. Police immediately set up a perimeter and continued to search the 224-unit apartment complex into Friday afternoon, including apartments where nobody was home. The management company provided a master key for police to enter every unit.

The suspect is described as a black man last seen wearing a white T-shirt and khaki pants. He has low-cut hair with braids. If anyone has any information regarding this person or incident they are asked to call 911 immediately

A phone message left at the management office of the apartments was not returned Friday.

Bowman said police are still intensely searching for the suspect but have exhausted all leads in the apartment complex.

Police began zeroing in on the area earlier this month, Bowman said, because they had reason to believe a stolen rifle was in the complex.

“We don’t believe that is related to this incident,” Bowman said.

Brandon Jones has lived in the complex for eight months, but he says after Friday’s events, he’s moving.

Jones said he returned to the apartment complex about 1 a.m. and found his home surrounded by police. He wasn’t allowed inside until about 5 a.m.

He’s never witnessed a violent crime in the area, but he’s still had enough.

“I’ve never seen things like this before,” Jones said. “It’s usually pretty laid back.”

Normally a quiet neighborhood

Neighbors say the incident has them startled in what they describe as a typically quiet neighborhood.

Alicia Mack stood outside the front door of her home across the street from the complex where the shooting took place watching as camouflaged SWAT units entered apartments. She woke early Friday morning to the sound of DeKalb County’s helicopter units flying above using a heat sensor and spotlights to search for the suspect.

With her hand on her 7-year-old nephew’s shoulder, she said the activity is unusual and has her worried.

“I’ve been here for a while but I’ve never seen anything like this,” Mack said. “It’s shocking.”

Barbara Smith, who also lives on Hurt Road near the site of the shooting, echoed her concerns.

“I’m angry because this is a beautiful neighborhood with people that are kind, hardworking and take care of their neighbors,” Smith said.

She woke up at 4 a.m. Friday to find a recorded automated message on her answering machine informing her a policeman had been shot nearby and the suspect was still on the loose. Smith says she appreciated the county using its Code Red Alert, but the shooting has her shaken.

She wants to see police take more action to curb crime in what she considers a problematic area.

“We as a neighborhood have known for decades that drugs are being sold over there (at Concord Chase Apartments),” Smith said. “That’s common knowledge, and the police don’t seem to be able to do anything about it.”

The neighborhood is otherwise calm and quiet, she said.

“It’s all together a horrible place to live next to in an area with homes, children and elderly,” Smith said. “I just hope (the shooting) leads to better action for the neighborhood.”

Several area law enforcement agencies joined the manhunt including the Cobb County Police Department, the Smyrna Police Department, Cobb County Sheriff’s Office, Powder Springs Police Department and Austell Police Department. Dekalb County also lent its helicopter units.

Police asking for tips

With the suspect still at large, Bowman is asking residents to remain cautious.

“We’re asking that the public give us a call if they know anything,” he said, adding the smallest tip could be helpful.

“We’ve got an armed gunman on foot out there,” Bowman said.

Bowman said he wants the shooter to know that he did not kill the police officer.

Cobb County Commissioner Lisa Cupid, who represents the area where the shooting took place, says it’s a terrible situation but one that can happen anywhere.

“Certainly the desire is for no officer to get shot while on the job and I hope that he continues to recover well,” Cupid said. “It is unfortunate for this to occur and I hope that the officers are able to catch the individual responsible for the shooting.”

This is not the first time Officer Rogers has been involved in a shooting while on duty. But in the first instance, on July 8, 2008, Rogers was on the other end of the shooting. He shot and killed a suspected counterfeiter who was said to have been reaching for a handgun on his waistband, according to police reports. That incident happened at a Texaco station on Cherokee Street in Kennesaw.

Comments
(17)
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does it matter
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July 13, 2013
The officer was in a predominately black/hispanic area doing his job. How is that profiling? He was making sure that the community was safe as he was patrolling their apartment complex. He could have chosen at that time in the morning to not go in there. But he saw someone out side at one in the morning. If there was a minority, it was the officer. Anyone that is in an area or out and about where and when the "normal" public would not be is loitering and is subject to questioning. Crime has NO color so get off of the race thing.... We have an armed and dangerous felon roaming the streets that needs to be brought to justice.
RSO
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July 13, 2013
Hey guys at MDJ. I don't know if you realize it or not but you have misidentified the officers in your photo (not the video). They are not members of the CCPD swat team. They are actually the tact team from the Cobb County Sheriff's Office, not the PD. Do you see Sheriff printed plainly on the back of their vests? Two different departments were doing a sweep for this creep.
Wrong RSO
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July 16, 2013
Those are Cobb County Police Officers....
Look Again
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July 16, 2013
To WRONG RSO.....No you are wrong it clearly says SHERIFF and the back of their vests. Try looking at the photo closely. The PD and the SO are not one and the same.
akaunknown
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July 13, 2013
Omg! Are we seriously going to play the race card on this?! I would love to see some of these critical people put on a uniform and do the job of a police officer. A male at 1:15am outside in a high drug traffic area is suspicious!!! It does not matter what race they are. This is in no way comparable to Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman was NOT a uniformed police officer. This officer was in a FULL POLICE UNIFORM and ON DUTY. And it becomes even more suspicious when a person that is already perceived as suspicious (a definition that is much different to a sworn police officer than a civilian) runs. That tells a police officer that maybe this guy is wanted, maybe he has something on him illegal. So what does the police officer do? Chase the person to protect the community around him. And what happens? That officer gets shot and then gets criticized by someone sitting on their couch watching the news story unfold. People disappoint me.
William2510
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July 12, 2013
Why do they have to make such a big deal about he was wearing a vest, it is like saying reminder you have to shoot cops in the head.

Wow Good Point
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July 12, 2013
Get a life, this has nothing to do with race....only with law and order. Bleeding heart liberals like yourself, need to crawl back under the rock from which you came from. This officer was doing his job, wow! There is no excuse for someone to shoot an officer.... Just Damn!
Tim Tidwell
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July 12, 2013
Both inncodents could have been avoided had the two people just stopped and explained what they were doing! If they were not doing anything wrong then nothing would have happened! But running or resisting with violence only shows a sign of guilty! Wouldn't any home owner want to know what you are doing walking around either late T night or where you are in a place known for trouble when you don't belong there!
Good point
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July 12, 2013
So a guy notices a young black male walking around a housing complex and he follows him. The young black male turns and shoots the person and gets away. The difference is this time it was a police officer following the "suspicious person." Are all those saying Trayvon was "profiled" and "hunted down and killed" and "Zimmerman got what he deserved" now going to say the police officer never would have been shot if he had not profiled and followed the guy just because he was black. Are they now going to blame the cop for starting it. I doubt it, but this is the EXACT same scenario, but those blinded by racism and white guilt won't see it.
anonymous
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July 12, 2013
It is NOT the EXACT same scenario. Zimmerman is not a police officer. No matter what spin you try to put on it, it is not the EXACT same scenario. No one blames this cop--he was doing his job. Zimmerman was being a vigilante. I am not blinded by racism and white guilt. I am also not blinded by false comparisons. Read up on what EXACT means.
What point?
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July 12, 2013
I don't understand your "blinded by racism and white guilt" comment. Zimmerman is not white, he's Hispanic. Therefore, your point makes no sense. Furthermore, the incident in Smyrna & the Zimmerman/Martin tragedy were not about race until the media presented it that way. Only then was that young man's death ruled a racially motivated hate crime over race. Skin color should be for description purposes only, just like height and weight. Any suggestions that the Smyrna or Zimmerman incidents were racially motivated actions only fuel the ignorance behind racism.
anonymous 22
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July 12, 2013
Ummm i live in this neighborhood and you dont know these boys. Yes he was black but this boys out here are very ignorant and disrespectful. So before you try and jumpp to conclusions know more about what happened besides this article. So its not the police officers fault...
Pokkieman
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July 13, 2013
Very good point, Good point.
sounds familiar
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July 12, 2013
compare and contrast this to the Zimmerman trial. Kind of sounds the same...follows someone acting suspiciously, altercation, except this time the follower got shot. Are people now going to say this would not have happened if he didn't follow the guy.
anonymous
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July 12, 2013
Nice try. However, you left out the most important fact in your comparison. I did compare and contract this to the Zimmerman trial. In contrast, Zimmerman is not a police officer with the authority to follow people people then shoot them. What Zimmerman did was murder. What this officer was his JOB. He had the legal authority. Your comparison reminds me of "But, officer, I was driving 90 because you were."
C. Smith
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July 13, 2013
Familiar: In the case of what happened in this article, a police officer did what you commented about and was well within the law to do what he did. In the case of Zimmerman, he is a civilan that reported a suspicious person to the police department and had been advised not to follow the person. Zimmerman's role ended with that phone call. After that, it was murder. And, by the way, it is coming out now. Martin also Stood His Ground. He died, but he Stood His Ground.
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