Police Come Under Fire|in Multiple States

     (CN) – A white Valdosta, Georgia police officer was recovering from surgery Friday evening after he was shot by an assailant who placed a 911 call and then waited to ambush him.
     The shooting was one of three known cases of officers coming under fire in the wake of a shooting in Dallas, Texas Thursday night that left five city police officers dead and seven others wounded. The other attacks on law enforcement officers occurred in Tennessee and Missouri.
     The Georgia incident happened just hours after the shooting of the police officers in Dallas. According to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the gunman, an Asian male identified as Stephen Paul Beck, placed a call to 911 to report a car break-in outside the Three Oaks Apartments early Friday morning.
     When Officer Randall Hancock arrived at the scene shortly after 8 a.m., Beck, 22, opened fire, investigators said.
     “The officer called out on the radio screaming for assistance,” Valdosta Police Chief Brian Childress said at a news conference, and officers from multiple law enforcement agencies swarmed the apartment complex.
     In the shootout that followed, Beck was also wounded. Both Beck and Officer Hancock are expected to survive.
     “We’re putting pieces together to understand what happened and why, developing witnesses,” said Scott Dutton, spokesman for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, which is handling the case at the request of local police.
     Dutton said it is unclear whether the shooting has any connection to the Dallas murders or not.
     Charges against Beck were still pending Friday afternoon as he was being treated at a Florida hospital, Dutton said.
     Hancock was shot in the abdomen, just below his protective vest. Other shots hit him in vest.
     Hancock underwent surgery at a local hospital and is reported to be in stable condition.
     Meanwhile, in Tennessee, a man accused of shooting indiscriminately at passing cars and police on a state highway told investigators he was angry about police violence against African-Americans, authorities said Friday.
     One woman died and three others, including one police officer, were injured in the rampage early Thursday morning rampage.
     The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said in a news release that initial conversations with the suspect, Lakeem Keon Scott, revealed he was troubled by several incidents across the U.S.
     Scott, who is black, was wounded in the shootout with police, remains hospitalized and has not yet been charged. All those shot were white, police confirmed.
     The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation alleges Scott — armed with an assault rifle, a pistol and a large amount of ammunition — fired shots through the window of the Days Inn on Volunteer Parkway.
     The front desk clerk, Deborah Watts, was struck and injured. Days Inn owner Kiran Patel said he awoke to the sound of gunfire. His wife called the front desk to see what happened, Watts answered and said she’d been shot. She remains in the hospital in serious but stable condition.
     The gunman then turned his fire to cars passing on the highway, investigators say.
     Newspaper carrier Jennifer Rooney, a 44-year-old mother of two, was on her way to pick up papers for the morning delivery when a bullet struck her. The Bristol Herald-Courier reported that her car careened over a median and crashed through a chain link fence.
     David Whitman Davis was also injured by flying glass from the gunfire, the TBI said.
     Three officers with the Bristol Tennessee Police Department arrived and confronted Scott, who fired on them.
     Office Matthew Cousins was hit in the leg. He was treated for superficial injuries and released.
     Scott was stuck by the officers returning fire. He remains in the hospital in serious but stable condition.
     The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said the investigation is ongoing as they work to understand the shooter’s motive.
     In Missouri, a motorist fired at a police car Friday morning as the officer drove by. In all, four officers were wounded. The officer wounded outside St. Louis is in critical but stable condition. The wounded officers are expected to survive.
     The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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