Two brothers are dead and a police officer is injured after a man killed his brother and then opened fire on police Monday night in Southeast D.C., the department says.
The shooting prompted a massive police response and sparked fear among officers.
Alphonzo Carter died after he was shot by Eric Carter inside an apartment on Savannah Terrace SE, D.C. police say. Alphonzo Carter was 55.
Eric Carter died after he shot at officers, who returned fire. He was 53.
A D.C. officer is recovering after the department says Eric Carter shot him in the chest and back. His bulletproof vest stopped the shot, sources told News4.
The Carters told News4 they were stunned by the loss of the brothers.
Eric Carter's sister, Renee Carter, said she thought something had "triggered" her brother. The brothers generally got along, she said.
Their mother, Gloria Carter, said she was in the family apartment when her son opened fire.
"I was sitting on my bed and heard that click and said, 'Eric, do you have a gun?' I said, 'Eric, do you have a gun?' After a while, I heard two shots," she said.
"I said, 'Eric, what's going on? Why are you doing this?'" she continued.
The mother fled to the apartment of a neighbor, who called for help to the 2200 block of Savannah Terrace SE, south of Suitland Parkway.
Officers responded at about 7:05 p.m. When their arrived, Eric Carter shot at them. Officers fired back, and both an officer — who the department did not name — and Eric Carter were shot. Eric Carter was pronounced dead at the scene. The officer was rushed to a hospital.
Officers then found Alphonzo Carter with gunshot wounds inside the apartment.
The family questioned why police did not allow medics to go inside the apartment to treat Alphonzo Carter.
According to 911 call records, one of the brothers appears to have called 911 from Eric Carter's cellphone.
"My brother — please help me. Please help me," he said.
After the shooting, D.C. police chief Peter Newsham told reporters that Alphonzo Carter was still alive and in critical condition. He said officers needed to respond to the emergency as they did because the didn't know who was still in the apartment.
The officers involved were placed on administrative leave, per department policy. The body cameras of responding officers were activated, police said. The footage is being reviewed.
Eric Carter's stepfather is a D.C. officer himself.
Fellow officers of the injured officer rushed to MedStar Washington Hospital Center Monday night.
"The first thought when you get a call like this is ... [you hope] that he's not seriously injured," Newsham said.