Man Suspected of Shooting 2 Detroit Cops Was Recently Paroled

April 03, 2013, 2:00 AM by  Allan Lengel

Updated: 9:05 a.m. Wednesday: The police officer who was shot in the leg was released from the hospital, according to the Detroit Poiice Department.  The officer who was shot in the head is listed in critical condition.


By Allan Lengel and Bill McGraw

The man suspected of shooting and wounding two Detroit police officers on Tuesday evening following a car chase on the city's west side, had been on parole since last October after serving time for armed robbery, according to a law enforcement official and public records.

Matthew Renard Joseph, 23, of Detroit, was under surveillance Tuesday for a March 28, narcotics-related homicide, a source said. In the end, he was fatally shot by law enforcement.

The surveillance, which began shortly before 6 p.m. in the 3700 block of 25th Street,  turned into a car chase. After police boxed Joseph's car in at Linwood and Hooker, they got out of the car, law enforcement sources said.

Joseph then opened fire, striking one officer in the head and the other  twice in the leg. Law enforcement shot back, killing him, authorities said. Two people in the suspect's car, a man and a woman, were taken into custody, Detroit Police said.

Police Chief Chester Logan held a press conference alongside Mayor Dave Bing.

Both wounded Detroit officers are part of an anti-violent task force, Comprehensive Violence Reduction Partnership, run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. The one hit in the leg was released from Henry Ford Hospital. The one who was struck in the head was listed in critical condition this morning.

The officer who was shot in the head is described by one law enforcement source  as in his mid-30s and African American. A University of Michigan graduate, he jointed the ATF task force in 2011. He is a 12-year veteran of the police force.

The other officer, a white sergeant about 50 years old, was shot in the leg twice. He has served with the task force for about five years and also was in stable condition. He has been a Detroit cop for 24 years.

"They both have excellent reputations," the source said.

Besides Detroit police, at least one agent from ATF was on the surveillance.  Detroit police and Michigan State Police joined the pursuit of the suspect's car.

Site of west-side shootout Tuesday evening.
Michigan Department of Corrections records show that Jospeh was sentenced in May 2007 to a minimum of 3 years and 9 months in prison and a maximum of 15 years. He was paroled last Oct. 2.

Detroit police Chief Chester Logan told reporters Tuesday night that officers were investigating the suspect for the deadly shooting. 

"The officers attempted to make a traffic stop in the 37000 block of 25th Street. A vehicle pursuit occurred. The vehicle was finally stopped at Linwood and Hooker, where the suspect in the homicide fired shots at the officers, who returned fire," said Logan.

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