CAMDEN, N.J. — A pair of gunmen blasted a barrage of bullets this week into the Camden, NJ, home of two police officers and their newborn baby girl — in what authorities described as a “targeted” attack.
The couple and their 10-day-old baby escaped injury after the assailants opened fire on their home about 11:45 p.m. Tuesday, NJ.com reported.
Six of the seven rounds that struck the home penetrated, and made it inside – two through the front door, according to Camden Police Chief Joseph Wysocki.
The Camden County officers and their infant were on the second floor at the time of the attack, he said.
“The attack on our officers was an affront to the department and will not be tolerated,” Wysocki said, according to NBC Philadelphia.
“It hurts, it hurts. I have 400 officers, everybody is hurt at this time and there is a lot of anxiety. I’m not going to let three people or four people like change what’s going on in Camden,” he said, WPVI reported.
“Everyone is investigating this and helping us to bring these thugs in to justice. We are going to catch them, and we are going to bring them in,” Wysocki added. “Ten days before this incident, they had their first baby together and started a family.”
The officers – the man has been with the department for four years and his wife for two — are on medical and family leave, he said.
The chief said a motive for the shooting was unknown. However, he said it’s “very common knowledge” that the cops live at the home, New York Post reported.
“I do know that this is a targeted attack against this residence where the officers reside,” Wysocki said.
Investigators found seven empty shell casings in front of the home. Moreover, they identified a 1998 Honda Odyssey with a temporary paper tag in the area during the incident, according to NJ.com.
Wysocki said there were three people in the minivan during the shooting, a driver and two suspected gunmen.
On Thursday morning, investigators located and towed the vehicle for investigation, officials said.
Police located and towed a 1998 dark colored Honda Odyssey during the investigation into the shooting of a home of two Camden County Police officers. (Camden County Police Department)
FBI Special Agent Michael Driscoll said that “the possibility that someone may have targeted law enforcement causes a true threat to the citizens of Camden, NJ.com reported.
“We’re determined to get to the bottom of this together,” he added.
Camden County Freeholder Louis Cappelli said he told the chief to “do whatever is necessary to stop anymore more violence against our officers, immediately.”
“This mindless evil conduct will not be tolerated,” Cappelli said. “I want to share a very clear message to the scumbag thugs behind this senseless act. We’re coming to get you and you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
He added: “If you think you can get away with these crimes under the cover of some unfortunate acts taking place in other parts of the nation, or under cover of some national movement, you are wrong.”
HAPPENING NOW: Camden County Police are asking for your help in capturing the person/s responsible for shooting up the home of 2 police officers, with their newborn inside. I’ll have the latest on the investigation on @CBSPhilly at 6. pic.twitter.com/JEnl5SzEzU
— Kimberly Davis CBS3 (@KimberlyDavisTV) September 17, 2020
A reward of $20,000 for information leading to arrest of the suspects was offered by the FBI, ATF and local Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 218.
Neighbors expressed their shock and said it gives them comfort to live near police.
“They’re visible all the time,” Jewell Rippie said told the Philadelphia CBS affiliate.
“It’s quite disturbing. The baby was in there. People can just be so cruel,” neighbor Farrah Adams told the Courier Post.
Anyone with information on the shooting or the vehicle that was used in the shooting was urged to call the department’s tip line at 856-757-7420 or use the STOPit app. More contact information for the agency can be found at www.camdencountypd.org and the public was reminded that all tips and information will be considered anonymous.