Midstate law enforcement officers are searching for two men believed to have been involved in shooting a Macon police officer in a downtown parking deck late Thursday afternoon.
The officer, Pvt. Tavoris Wilson of the Macon Police Department’s bicycle patrol, was shot in the torso on the second floor of the parking deck located on Poplar Street, adjacent to Cherry Street Lane, after he came upon the two men trying to break into a vehicle, police spokesman Lt. Eric Walker said.
Wilson’s protective vest absorbed most of the bullet’s impact. He was taken to The Medical Center of Central Georgia, where he was in stable condition Thursday evening, Walker said. Wilson’s family was notified shortly after the incident.
“It didn’t look like it penetrated the vest,” Macon Police Chief Mike Burns said. “It looks like he’ll be OK.”
Police closed off Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard between Poplar and Walnut streets for nearly an hour while officers searched the deck, as well as a nearby parking deck on the corner of MLK Jr. Boulevard and Cherry Street.
Police described the suspects as two black males, both dressed in black clothing. Police said they each are about 5 feet 8 inches tall and roughly 180 pounds.
There were conflicting reports of how the suspects got away. One report was that they left in a gray or silver vehicle, while another report indicated they fled on foot. Investigators were still piecing together details late Thursday.
The reports of an officer getting shot drew concern from law enforcement agencies across Middle Georgia. U.S. marshals and officers from Mercer University’s campus police department also were on the scene. Macon police Capt. Jimmy Barbee said he received calls from the sheriff’s offices in Jones and Peach counties before he had even arrived at the scene, asking if Macon police needed assistance.
Architect and developer Gene Dunwody Jr., who designed the deck, which is owned by NewTown Macon, said there aren’t any security cameras in the deck, but there have been recent discussions about installing some.
Many of the people at businesses along that stretch of MLK Jr. Boulevard said they weren’t aware of anything going on until they heard sirens.
Marian Searcy, who works at Edward’s Barber Shop, said he didn’t hear a gunshot. He said someone dropped by the shop to tell people inside what happened.
“We got word that an officer was injured,” he said. “We heard they had sealed the entire block off.”
Anyone with information on the case should call Macon Regional CrimeStoppers at (877) 68-CRIME.
Telegraph staff writers Amy Leigh Womack and Travis Fain contributed to this report.
To contact writer Phillip Ramati, call 744-4334.