GAITHERSBURG, Md. (AP) — One or more officers in plainclothes opened fire on an armed suspect in the Maryland city of Gaithersburg on Friday afternoon and the man died at the scene, police said.
Gaithersburg Police Chief Mark Sroka told a news conference the shooting happened shortly after 5:50 p.m. in that suburban community, media outlet Fox5 DC reported.
The police chief told reporters a street crimes unit of officers in plainclothes had been conducting surveillance on the man because they believed he was armed with a handgun. He said the officers approached the man, identified themselves as police and the suspect then fled across Maryland Route 355, a six-lane artery.
The chief said the shooting occurred in a grassy sidewalk area near an apartment unit.
“The suspect displayed a handgun and at least one or more Gaithersburg officers discharged their department-issued firearms,” Sroka said, adding a handgun was found at the scene.
He said no officers were injured in the shooting and the man was pronounced dead at the site. The man was not immediately identified and Sroka said he had no initial details about why the officers knew he was armed.
Sroka said the officers would be placed on administrative leave while an investigation continues.
Gaithersburg is a city in Montgomery County, a Maryland suburb of the nation’s capital, and about 22 miles (35 kilometers) from downtown Washington, D.C.