BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A shooting early Sunday morning claimed the life of a Birmingham sergeant and left an officer injured.
Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith confirmed Sgt. Wytasha Carter was killed during the shooting.
Chief Smith said Sunday morning two officers approached two suspects during a burglary around 1:59 a.m. this morning in the 900 block of 5th Ave. N. The suspect shot the two officers after a pat-down revealed he was armed.
“As the officers approached to investigate, one of the suspects produced a handgun. He began to fire at the officers,” Chief Smith said.
Sgt. Carter and the other officer were transported to UAB Hospital, where Carter died and the other officer remains.
“Trust me when I tell you he’s not completely out of the woods by any stretch of the imagination,” Chief Smith said.
An 18-year-old suspect is currently in custody and a 31-year-old suspect is receiving medical attention at UAB. Birmingham police say there could be more suspects.
“We will keep all options open. We are trying to determine exactly how many people were and exactly what occurred, but all of this falls with the scope of their investigation,” Chief Smith said.
“This is one of the roughest hours of your career. There’s not a chief, not an officer, that ever wants to have to deal with this," Chief Smith says. "This is a very, very difficult thing for the family. A very difficult thing for the department.”
Chief Smith confirmed there had been burglaries in the area and that the officers were working the investigation at the time of the shooting. Chief Smith does not know if those break-ins are related.
“The main thing is that we’re here for them. We’re going to do everything that we can to support them," says Chief Smith when asked about the family. "This is a very difficult time. There are members of the department who have worked with them for years. They are hurting like everyone else.”