Third suspect arrested in shooting of Wilmington officer

Police have arrested a third man wanted in connection with the shooting of a Wilmington Police officer Sunday afternoon.  



UPDATE: Wilmington Police arrested a third suspect believed to be the man who fled from police after the shooting of Officer Justin Wilkers Sunday afternoon.  They made the arrest late Monday night.  They still have not said who they believe to be the trigger man in the shooting that sent the 34-year-old Wilmington officer to the hospital with a bullet lodged in his skull.

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During a routine traffic stop on Sunday, 34 year-old officer Justin Wilkers was shot in the face when three suspects tried to make a get away on the 1200 block of Peach Street, in the the city’s South Bridge area.

Now 21 year-old Ronald Bryce along with 20 year-old Jared Wiggins both of Wilmington are in police custody. But one remains on the loose.

Both Wilmington’s mayor, Dennis Williams and his new police chief were grateful the officer was not more seriously hurt, but angry that shooting took place. “This assault on our police officer Justin Wilkers is an up front insult and a total sign of disrespect of authority,” said Chief Christine Dunning of the Wilmington Police Dept.

According to national statistics, Chief Dunning says over the past ten years more than 1500 hundred officers have died in the line of duty across the country and she’s very fortunate Wilkers is recovering today in the hospital.

“Traffic stops still remain amongst the most dangerous of police duties …why is that….because every day constantly we stop vehicles for violation. It’s a seemingly routine police action but our police officers walk into that situation not knowing what they’re facing,” added Dunning.

Mayor Williams said he was saddened by the news of the shooting.  He has made crime his top priority in his run for the city’s top spot, and he adds it’s just a matter of time when the city’s crime will be addressed.

“We have an aggressive plan that we are going to release. We will combat this crime, we will stop it. I’ll guarantee you.” said Mayor Williams. 

Williams who’s being tight lipped about details admits plans may not be well received.

“When we do release this crime plan that we have and we start fighting crime more aggressively, there’s some folks that’s probably not going to like our style but that’s too bad,” Williams stated.

However, the mayor gave this statement, on solving the murder of a 16 year old boy who was shot and killed last week.  It hinted toward more police presence.

“We are going to start more aggressive policing until we put our plan in action.  I have a consultant and a professor that’s assigned to the Wilmington Police Department,” added Williams.

During the day, police combed the neighborhood looking for clues in the shooting and searching for clues and for the suspect.


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