Washington DC

DC Police Fatally Shoot Man Initially Found Asleep in Car With Gun: MPD

It’s the second time in 12 hours that D.C. police reported shooting a man

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D.C. police shot and killed a man in Northeast early Wednesday after the department says officers found him armed and unconscious in a car blocking traffic. 

Antwan Gilmore, of Capitol Heights, Maryland, died. He was 27. 

No officers were hurt. The officers involved were placed on administrative leave.

In a statement late Wednesday, the Metropolitan Police Department laid out what they say happened. 

Fifth District officers were dispatched to Florida and New York avenues NE at about 2:45 a.m. for a report of an unconscious person in a car occupying a traffic lane. 

When they arrived, they found Gilmore, who was “unresponsive” and had his foot on the brake of a running car. A handgun was visible in his waistband, police said. 

More officers were called to the scene, and “a ballistic shield was deployed.” 


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Officers tried to talk with Gilmore. He “reacted” and pulled the car forward. Officers ordered him to stop the car and he did. 

“The driver then proceeded forward as an MPD member discharged their service weapon multiple times, striking the driver inside the vehicle,” police said. 

The car moved forward and came to rest in the unit block of New York Avenue NE.

Officers removed Gilmore from the car and began to try to save his life. Medics arrived and Gilmore was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. 

Body camera footage is under review, MPD said.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Washington Field Division responded to help D.C. police with the shooting.

About 20 minutes passed between officers finding Gilmore and the shooting, Chief of Police Robert Contee said. He told reporters that a passerby called 911 to report a man who apparently was asleep behind the wheel of a black BMW. Officers were cautious as Gilmore was unconscious, Contee said. He said body-worn camera footage has audio of officers saying things such as, "You don't want to scare him."

Four or five officers responded, but it appears only one officer fired, Contee said.

Police initially said Gilmore held the firearm at some point.

His BMW was seen crashed into a tree with three wheels on a sidewalk.

Contee says the shooting was filmed on body-worn camera but the video was obscured by the ballistic shields.

D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson said police shootings are gravely concerning but there's wasn't immediately enough information on this case to "defend or condemn the police."

“Successful policing requires community trust. That trust rises or falls on whether our communities feel protected or threatened by the police. Chief Contee must move aggressively to prove whether this use of force was indeed justified," Mendelson said in a written statement.

New York Avenue was closed between 4th Street NE and North Capitol as numerous police descended on the scene, which is near the NoMa-Gallaudet Metro station. The roadway reopened after the BMW was towed.

It’s the second time in 12 hours that D.C. police reported shooting a man.

An MPD officer shot a man who allegedly pulled out a gun at about 6 p.m. Tuesday on Minnesota Avenue near R Street in Southeast.

“It’s unfortunate. It’s unfortunate we have to come face-to-face with armed gunmen in our community,” Contee said.

Stay with NBC Washington for more details on this developing story.

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