- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 1, 2017

An off-duty police officer working security for a grocery store in a Maryland suburb shot and killed a shoplifting suspect early Tuesday morning, The Baltimore Sun reported.

According to The Sun, the officer, whose name has not been released, confronted the man in the parking lot of a Giant supermarket in Catonsville, about 5 miles west of Baltimore. The deceased, alleged to have taken detergent from the store without paying, reportedly got into his car and took off, dragging the officer with him. 

That’s when the officer fired his weapon, fatally injuring the driver, according to the Baltimore County Police Department. The off-duty officer “feared for his life,” said Officer Jennifer Peach, a spokeswoman for the agency.

The suspect died at the scene and a passenger in the vehicle was hospitalized “for stress related pain,” The Sun reported, citing Officer Peach.

The shooting is the county’s eighth overall officer-involved shooting of the year and the fourth fatality resulting from a police officer discharging his weapon, The Sun reported.

The incident occurred shortly before 4 a.m., according to WBAL-TV. Homicide detectives are reviewing security footage as part of their investigation, the NBC affiliate said.

Although it’s unclear if the incidents were related, The Sun noted one local woman whom it interviewed recalled a brazen theft last week in which a shoplifter evaded store employees when he crossed a busy nearby highway with a backpack loaded with the store’s wares.

“When he realized they weren’t going to stop following him, he ran up over that way and crossed Route 40,” the woman said.

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