Man charged with attempted murder in shooting of Indiana cop
RICHMOND, Ind. (AP) — Prosecutors on Friday filed two attempted murder charges and four other counts against a man accused of shooting an eastern Indiana police officer in the head during a traffic stop and search for possible narcotics.
The Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office also has charged Phillip Matthew Lee, 47, of Richmond, with three drug possession counts for methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin and possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon. A judge set Lee’s bond at $1 million.
Richmond police Officer Seara Burton is being treated at a hospital in Dayton, Ohio, following Wednesday’s shooting. Richmond police Chief Michael Britt said Burton was in “extremely critical” condition and has not regained consciousness. Britt told WTHR-TV that Burton was back on a ventilator after breathing on her own Thursday night.
Lee’s moped was stopped by officers and Burton was called in to assist with her police dog, which indicated the possible presence of narcotics. The stop was being recorded on video by another officer.
Court documents say that while officers were speaking with Lee, he pulled out a concealed gun and fired several rounds toward officers. Video shows Lee aiming at the officers’ heads and Burton being struck by the gunfire. An officer next to her was nearly shot in the head. Other officers returned fire, and Lee shot at them as he ran away.
A probable cause affidavit said one of Lee’s gunshots narrowly missed another Richmond officer, Austin Adams.
Burton, 28, is a four-year veteran of the Richmond department.