JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — A Jersey City police officer shot a man who authorities say attacked the officer and his partner with a sharpened fence post early Tuesday.
The attack and shooting came just days after a rookie police officer was gunned down in an ambush, leaving police and residents on edge.
According to a preliminary investigation, two officers with the emergency services unit saw the 25-year-old man at about 2:30 a.m. and ordered him to drop the post, the Hudson County Prosecutor's Office said in a statement.
Authorities said the man threw the post through a passenger-side window of the emergency services truck, hitting an officer in the head. The man then reached through the window and grabbed the officer's rifle, authorities said. The two struggled for the rifle, which discharged through the vehicle's door and struck the man, officials said.
The officers exited the vehicle and ordered the man to the ground. One officer opened fire, striking the man, after authorities said the man refused to show his hands and hid a hand in his waistband.
The man was taken to a hospital and was expected to undergo surgery for non-life-threatening injuries, the prosecutor's office said. The man's name has not been released.
The police officers were also being treated.
On Sunday, Officer Melvin Santiago was ambushed as he responded to an armed robbery call at an all-night drug store, authorities said. Other officers returned fire, killing Lawrence Campbell.
A memorial to Campbell in his neighborhood had been removed by Tuesday morning. Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop said that he ordered the makeshift collection of balloons, candles, empty liquor bottles and messages of love from friends scrawled on T-shirts taped to a brick wall removed Monday night.
"I had it taken down last night. I am not going to let a few residents pretend like they express the views of a great city like Jersey City," Fulop said in a statement.
Fulop and other city officials had lashed out that some residents created a makeshift memorial and were grieving for the suspect instead of the officer.
"Rest easy," ''Thug in peace" and "See u on the other side" were among the things friends wrote to Campbell.
Angelique Campbell, Campbell's widow, said Tuesday that she doesn't plan to restore the memorial. Newspaper clippings about the case were added to another memorial nearby to Lavon King, a 20-year-old shot by police after they said he struggled with a police officer and tried to disarm him.
Campbell had told News 12 New Jersey on Sunday that she was sorry for Santiago's family but that her husband should have killed more officers if they were planning to kill him. She later apologized for the comments, which Fulop called "ignorant" and "disgusting."
"Both families are hurt. Let this cop be laid to rest peacefully. Let Lawrence be put to rest peacefully. That's it," Angelique Campbell told The Associated Press on Tuesday. "There's no back-and-forth. I don't want to argue with no cops, I don't want to fight with no cops. I just want to put him in the ground, he's gone, that's it."
She said that Campbell had slipped back into an old drug habit over the past couple of weeks and "got back with the wrong crowd."