BODYCAM: Cop Hears Gunfire Half A Block Away, Charges In To Take Down Gunman
Baltimore, MD – Newly-released bodycam footage shows the moment that a Baltimore police officer charged towards the sound of gunfire and took a murder suspect into custody (video below).
The incident occurred at 11:04 a.m. on April 19, as a Baltimore Eastern District police officer was handling a landlord-tenant dispute on the 1700 block of North Register Street, the department said in a Facebook post.
The officer was speaking with a man and a woman outside of an apartment, when shots rang out down the street, the video showed.
The officer immediately took off sprinting in the direction of the continued gunfire. A woman could be heard screaming as the officer closed in on the shooter.
The officer saw the gunman running in an adjacent alley and pursued him onto Lafayette Street, WMAR reported.
As he rounded the corner of the block, he drew his weapon and pointed it at the shooter, who was sprinting in his direction, the video showed.
“Put the gun down!” the officer screamed. “Get on the ground! Now!”
The gunman, later identified as 17-year-old Eric Gilyard, sat down on the curb and raised his hands above his head.
“Roll over!” the officer commanded. “Roll the f - - k over!”
“I’ve got one down – I might have the shooter,” the officer said over his radio.
The teen was found in possession of an empty 9mm handgun, The Baltimore Sun reported.
According to police, investigators later learned that Gilyard had shot and killed 29-year-old Walter Baynes, who had stopped to see his grandparents at their residence, WMAR reported
After an hour-long visit, Baynes went outside and found that the tires on his vehicle had been slashed.
He went back inside to ask his grandparents for help, and the trio headed back out to Baynes’ vehicle.
Suddenly, Gilyard opened fire, hitting Baynes and his 69-year-old grandfather, George Evans, as they stood outside.
“Both victims were transported to area hospitals for treatment,” the Baltimore Police Department said in a Facebook post. “Tragically…Walter Baynes succumbed to his injuries at Johns Hopkins Hospital shortly after arrival.”
Police found a handgun tucked into Baynes’ waistband, but said he never returned fire, The Baltimore Sun reported.
Evans was shot eight times.
One bullet was lodged in his neck and another tore through his buttocks. His right knee was shattered, and his femur was fractured, he said.
“Eight times,” Evans reiterated. “I don’t know who did the shooting or where they came from.”
“These kids coming around, they ain’t got no remorse. They ain’t got no respect,” he told The Baltimore Sun. “They just take a life as a joke.”
Evans, who had lived in the neighborhood for many years, said things had changed since he first moved in so long ago.
“The block was nice. Everybody around there was peaceful,” he recalled, as he wiped away tears. “It’s just this new generation that’s coming up. They don’t realize they’re hurting families.”
Evans will survive, but his road to recovery will be long, he said.
Baltimore police praised the quick-thinking officer for his response to the violent incident, WMAR reported.
“The officer didn't hesitate at all to run right into danger,” department spokesperson TJ Smith said. “He was commended for his quick and decisive action that also can be categorized as life-saving. Any person bold enough to shoot and kill a man a half a block from a uniformed police officer, undoubtedly poses a continued threat to public safety.”
“Furthermore, the officer was able to take the suspect into custody without further incident,” Smith continued. “His performance was exemplary and his decisiveness ended an immediate threat.”
Gilyard was charged with first degree murder, second degree murder, first degree attempted murder, second degree murder, and “related firearms charges,” the department said in the Facebook post.
He was denied bail.
You can watch the officer’s heroic takedown in the video below: