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Thursday, October 31, 2013

APD: Alleged gunman arrested after opening fire on police officers in O4W

An alleged shooter who police say fired rounds at two on-duty Atlanta Police officers is now in custody.

Around 3 p.m. yesterday afternoon, two APD Path Force officers were headed to their parked squad car after grabbing lunch at Picnic!, a restaurant inside Irwin Street Market. As they left the building, the officers realized they were under fire.

According to APD spokesman Greg Lyons, 28-year-old Decatur resident Derrick Byron shot "three to four" rounds at the two officers from a small townhouse complex across Sampson Street close to the Atlanta Beltline's Eastside Trail. Neither officer was injured in the incident.

The policemen, who are members of the special unit that patrols the 22-mile loop of parks, trails, and transit, pursued Byron and caught him several blocks to the north. "[When he saw the police], he immediately threw the weapon down and surrendered," Lyons tells CL.

APD spokesman John Chafee says Bryon's gunfire hit several buildings. Jake Rothschild, CEO of Irwin Street Market's parent company, tells CL that the shooting didn't injure anyone or cause damage to his building. The incident, he says, piqued some customers' interest and attracted news trucks to the scene.

"They just had lunch with us," Rothschild says. "They were getting into their car to continue patrol. A guy was in the bushes across the street."

The officers, Lyons says, didn't respond to a 911 call or make a self-initiated traffic stop - and seemed baffled by the unprompted incident.

According to Fulton County Jail, Byron faces two counts of aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during commission of a felony, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, reckless conduct, and violating parole.

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