By Justine McDaniel, Chris Palmer, Jason Nark and Kristen A. Graham
Source The Philadelphia Inquirer
PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia police are investigating the possibility that the two officers who were shot at the city’s Independence Day celebrations on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway Monday were struck by stray bullets from celebratory gunfire — potentially fired from some distance away, officials said Tuesday.
Chief Inspector Frank Vanore said detectives “really don’t have a clear picture of where the bullets came from,” but that officers stationed around the Parkway and the Philadelphia Museum of Art for the Wawa Welcome America Party did not hear any shots or see any muzzle flashes in the area before the officers were struck.
Commissioner Danielle Outlaw also said early Tuesday morning that the officers who were shot hadn’t heard any gunfire before realizing they were struck. She said it was not clear where the shots had come from.
One officer, assigned to Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad, was hit in the shoulder, Outlaw said, while the other, a Philadelphia highway patrol officer, suffered a graze wound to the head. Police said a bullet was found lodged in his police cap.
Vanore said investigators were conducting ballistics tests and examining the officers’ injuries to try to figure out how far the shots may have traveled — or what the trajectory may have been — and detectives were seeking additional video evidence to determine if that could help pinpoint the scene of the gunfire.
”We just don’t know the origin,” Vanore said.
Police have not identified any potential suspects. Both officers were treated and released from Jefferson Hospital early Tuesday morning.
Staff writers Ximena Conde and Diane Mastrull contributed to this article.
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