Officials Praise Fallen Philly Officer
PPD mourns the lost of P/O Robert Wilson III. Please keep his family in your prayers pic.twitter.com/Do5ZDwyFDR
— Philadelphia Police (@PhillyPolice) March 6, 2015
We have some more details this morning about the death of Officer Robert Wilson, the Philadelphia police officer shot and killed Thursday while responding to a robbery at a North Philadelphia GameStop.
Wilson, who was in full uniform, along with his partner, went inside the GameStop at the Hope Plaza Shopping Center on 2101 West Lehigh Avenue around 4:30 p.m. Thursday. Suddenly, two armed men came inside and announced a robbery.
Wilson immediately confronted the pair, leading to a shootout. The suspects, who were on both sides of the officer, shot at him several times at close range as Wilson returned fire, officials said.
“Even though he was being struck multiple times, he continued to fire until the fatal [[shot]] was fired,” Ramsey said.
According to a law-enforcement source, the suspects had walked past Wilson’s partner, Officer Damien Stevenson, who was outside the store in a marked police cruiser.
Stevenson heard the shots, got out of his car and fired at the suspects as the snow swirled.
One of the robbers was struck in the leg and was taken into custody; the other tried to sneak off and blend in with the growing crowd of onlookers, but he also was captured, Ramsey said.
Wilson was taken to Temple University Hospital, where he was declared dead at 6:25 p.m..
Commissioner Charles Ramsey, red-eyed as he spoke at an evening news conference, said he had met the 30-year-old Wilson and his partner when they took part in a recent pilot program in which officers wore body cameras.
“I knew him, had met him. He was one of the best police officers this city has to offer, period,” Ramsey said, standing beside the mayor, the district attorney and other city officials.
Officer Wilson leaves behind a family with a one year old child and a nine year old child.
Slain Philly cop Robert Wilson (left) shown in police picture from Dec. Wilson was part of body camera pilot program pic.twitter.com/7TEZ3sfrdJ
— Jeffrey D Kolakowski (@jdkolakowski) March 6, 2015
Ramsey referred to recent controversies about police conduct and officer-involved shootings, and said he hoped “the same people that are talking about the issues involving police now say a prayer, and at least express condolences to his family.”
Wilson had “a 9-year-old son who is now going to grow up without a father as a result of what happened here today. A 1-year-old is going to grow up without a dad because of what happened today.
“He put his life on the line to make Philadelphia a better city, a safer city,” Ramsey said.