Arrest Made in Killing of Baltimore County Police Officer | WYPR

Arrest Made in Killing of Baltimore County Police Officer

May 22, 2018

Police Officer First Class Amy Caprio
Credit Baltimore County Police Department

A 16-year-old charged as an adult with first-degree murder in the death of a Maryland police officer has been ordered held without bail.

Dawnta Anthony Harris, of Baltimore, has been charged in the death Monday of Baltimore County Officer Amy Caprio. He made his first court appearance by video Tuesday. 

Authorities say three other suspects have been taken into custody, but have not identified them, nor announced charges against them. Baltimore County's public safety department tweeted Tuesday morning that the teenagers are suspects in area burglaries.

The department did not say whether the three played any role in the officer's death.

Police have not confirmed how Caprio was fatally injured in a Perry Hall neighborhood Monday, but witnesses reported hearing a pop before seeing a Jeep run her over.  Prosecutor William Bickel says investigators have reviewed Caprio's body camera footage and it clearly shows Harris accelerating a stolen Jeep at her as she was trying to apprehend him on the cul-de-sac where a burglary had just taken place. Police have not confirmed how Caprio was fatally injured in a Perry Hall neighborhood Monday, but witnesses reported hearing a pop before seeing a Jeep run her over.

Harris, who was arrested near where a Jeep was found abandoned, told a detective he had been waiting in the driver's seat of the vehicle as other associates of his were in the process of committing a burglary, according to the probable cause statement.

Harris also told the detective that he "drove at the officer," the statement said.

The records don't list an attorney for Harris, and attempts to reach people believed to be his family members were not immediately successful.

Tony Kurek told The Associated Press his adult son was outside in the family's yard Monday afternoon in the northeast Baltimore County community when the son saw the officer with her gun drawn, confronting the occupants of a Jeep.

"The next thing he heard was a pop, and he saw the Jeep take off and run right over her," said Kurek. The car left skid marks behind, he said, leaving the officer down and bleeding.

Logan Kurek, who is a volunteer firefighter, said he heard his younger brother "frantically screaming" and ran outside to perform CPR.

Baltimore County Police Cpl. Shawn Vinson said the officer went to investigate a call about a suspicious vehicle when she encountered at least one suspect and was "critically injured." He added that the confrontation may have stemmed from a burglary in progress, noting one home on the block had damage to a patio door. "What exactly happened, we are not sure yet until an autopsy is performed," Vinson said at a news conference Monday.

He said he had no information about whether she had fired her own weapon. Events began unfolding Monday afternoon in the leafy neighborhood of single-family homes. It was then that Kurek's neighbor, Dahle Amendt, said he had just settled into his recliner for a rest when he heard a woman's voice outside his house. "I heard, 'Get out of the car!' 'Get out of the car!' Get out of the car!' at least three times, and then a pop," Amendt said.

Amendt said his wife also ran outside and tried to revive the officer, who police say would have been on the force four years in July. "This is a shock. It's a quiet community. It's just so sad," Amendt said.

Acting Baltimore County Executive Fred Homan said in a statement, "It is a sad day in Baltimore County as we mourn the loss of a police officer who died in the line of duty. We share our sorrow with her family and her extended family, the women and men who put their lives on the line every day to keep our county safe."