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Deputy recovering after surgery, search for shooter continues



WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- A New Hanover County Sheriff's deputy is recovering after what the Sheriff's Office called "successful surgery" after he was shot today in Creekwood. Meanwhile, the search continues for the man who shot him.

Local, state and federal law enforcement agencies have joined forces to search for the suspect.

Sheriff Ed McMahon identified the injured deputy as Det. Michael Spencer.

Sheriff's Office spokesman Sgt. Jerry Brewer says Spencer appears to have suffered non-life-threatening injuries and should be OK.

Brewer says deputies, including Spencer, approached two men they saw drive into Creekwood. As they approached, the man who had been the passenger in the car started shooting. Spencer, a member of the Gang Task Force, was hit. Brewer says another deputy took cover behind a telephone pole and returned fire.

PHOTO GALLERY: Search for suspect in deputy shooting

Investigators say they are looking for a black male 5'8" or 5'10", 215-230 lbs. wearing black jeans, a black hoodie and a knit ball cap. McMahon says the unnamed suspect should be considered armed and dangerous.

At one point officers converged on an apartment at Lennon Woods on Lennon Drive. McMahon would not say whether that was related to the search for the shooting suspect.

Officers captured the driver of the car. They later released him and his vehicle after questioning him. Investigators have not released his identity.

During an afternoon news conference, Sheriff McMahon was asked if Creekwood has a gang problem. He would only say there was a gang problem in general in the area.

The shooting led to lockdowns at Mosley Performance Learning Center and Freeman Elementary School. The district later said law enforcement gave clearance to allow buses into Creekwood with police escort.

Police, deputies and state troopers swarmed the area in and around Creekwood looking for the suspect. Brewer said the SABLE helicopter could not used because of the weather. Pender County and Brunswick County also offered assistance, including K-9 units and the Brunswick County Sheriff's Office's new armored personnel carrier, which carried its SWAT Team.

Law enforcement officers blocked streets around the neighborhood. For much of the afternoon a Wilmington Police officer with a large firearm guarded the entrance to Creekwood. Officers also checked vehicles as they left Creekwood.

Creekwood residents say they are angry, because they say they never see this many officers when residents are shot in the neighborhood.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


Why wasn't SABLE called in?

Why wasn't SABLE called in?

We asked the Sheriff's

We asked the Sheriff's Office why - and it was because the cloud ceiling was too low Thursday.


Scott Pickey
WWAY News Director

Deputy Spencer

I thank you for your dedication. You very likely prevented a death or injury of a resident of Creekwood and put yourself in harms way to avoid that. I thank you for your loyalty to your oath of protection, for your sacrifice and pray for your speedy and full recovery. I honor you and your peers for you service and for putting yourselves in harms way every day you put on your badge. Thank you.

How can the Police stop the

How can the Police stop the problem in Creekwood, when DSS, and the Housing Authority, are using millions a year, to pay 16 year old girls to have as many unwed babies, there, as they can ?

The welfare giveaways are so ripe, down here, that we have them coming from, DC, NJ, Philly, and Detroit, where things have dried up.

One hand is sending teams of cops in, to put out the fire. The other hand is stoking the fire, by feeding, it with our hard earned tax dollars.



$236 is better than nothing.

$236 is better than nothing. I saw a couple with two older kids in Wal-Mart the other day with a huge over flowing basket of groceries, in the line for 20 items paid with a card. mine and your tax money. You lol. I,m not laughing.


I say let it be like cowboy days. Let em just shoot it out. Thugz will be thugz and cops will be thugz. These dirty cops we teying to railrid someone into prison so heck yeah,cowboy up!

get an education

Wow that made no sense cops here to protect citizens from crime they risk their lives everyday. For example drugs, guns, and violence..... you obviously live on the wrong side of the tracks and it shows.... I think they did everything they could to help the situation, how would people feel if they called cops and nobody responded?all I can say is ignorance! Don't call the cops when u have a problem just deal with it!

Well change is coming for

Well change is coming for wilmington 4 sure. I recently moved here, wilm is becoming like my home town in the late 90's early 2000 killing jumped robberys etc got so bad the justiced department was called in now known as vctf that deals with repeat offenders most are convicted in federal court from small gang members to large members / dealers...but this problem is also to blame on the law enforcement too...because had they truly went at issue with no mercy there officers wouldnt have been shoot!!!!now they may have a problem

creek wood

i think thay shuld post 2 maybe 3 officers at creekwook at all times till this shooting thing is over with every since i have lived in this part of north carolina there has been problums there at creekwood as im a student in the crimnal justice program and looking at futer emplormint at the newhanover county sheriffs office soon and knowing alot of the deputys there it hirts me so deeply to see of of our deputys hirt like this that people have no hart im praying as well as my chirch for det spencer

Jeremy, you have a heart of gold.

But please work very, very hard in school to meet your dreams. At some point you'll have to fill out a job application and they'll need to be able to understand it.


BE A PARENT!!! TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR HOME AND YOUR CHILDREN!!!! YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEM UNTIL THE ARE 18 YRS OLD. STOP BEING A FRIEND AND A LANDLORD!! STOP BEING A FRIEND meaning RAISE YOUR CHILDREN TO ACHIEVE AND EXCEL IN LIFE. RAISE THEM WITH MORALS AND VALUES. EXPOSE THEM TO POSITIVE THINGS IN LIFE. Carry them camping, to the library, museums,parks, plays, listen to classical music and spend SOMETIME with them. Instead of spending $100's of dollars on sneakers, name brand clothing and trying to give them all the material things. Buy them a book. Challenge their minds. Landlord meaning STOP TAKING THAT MESS and MONEY that they bring in your house. You know dog on well that they dont have a legal job. Stop the FOOLISHNESS and STOP BLAMING OTHERS.START BY LOOKING IN THE MIRROR. And if your child is out there doing that foolishness, TURN THEM IN!!! You'd rather have them in JAIL than BURY THEM. IF YOU KNOW THAT YOUR CHILD IS DOING SOMETHING ILLEGAL TURN THEM IN!!! BECAUSE THESE YOUNG PEOPLE DO NOT VALUE THEIR LIVES NOR YOURS. STOP TAKING ABOUT THE PROBLEM AND WORKING ON A SOLUTION BEFORE YOU BE ON TV HOLLERING AND CRYING BECAUSE MY CHILD WAS A GOOD CHILD. SOLUTION. Start evicting the problem people OUT.. Start doing a monthly checks in every house- open closet doors, make sure that every tenant is on the list. You SORRY BEHIND GIRLS( no matter the age) ALLOWING THESE SORRY MEN to LIVE WITH YOU AND YOUR CHILDREN. What example are you setting for your children when the boys NOT MEN come and go out your door NOT WORKING a JOB WHERE THEY VALUE THEIR FREEDOM NOR SOMEWHERE THAT TAXES ARE TAKEN OUT OF THEIR CHECK. IF you are allowing your children or boyfriends, or whatever you want to call them to live with you and your children or (Mom) allowing your children to live in your house with the FOOLISHNESS then I HAVE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE FOR YOU.. PLEASE HAVE A BLACK DRESS AND AN INSURANCE POLICY, so that you wont have to have a loan nor beg people to pay for the funeral. TAKE back your HOME!!! TAKE BACK YOUR FAMILY!! TAKE CONTROL!!!!

What Wilmington needs is a

What Wilmington needs is a company of marines to attack the gangs just like the Taliban.


AND the need to demolish public housing while they are at it.

Judges suck

The cops here are pretty solid, and I hope they shoot to kill when they find this thug.

I don't buy that its the residents' of Creekwood at fault totally, but we could use more Bill Cosbys, and less blaming everyone else.
I will never vote for any sitting judge again. I am an independent who voted for Obama, but next time every judge I vote for will be Republican. No more second chances for violent felons.

The judges can do nothing

The judges can do nothing other than what the laws allow. With structured sentencing the judges have to stick to a predetermined sentence based on severity of the charges and the criminal history of the offender. If the penalties are to be tougher, it is up to the General Assembly in Raleigh.

This is so sad. This is

This is so sad. This is ridiculous, so many crimes have been commited in this neighborhood. Young people die in this neighborhood all the time and the police and city officials overlook it, and say "another dead thug... he must have had it coming". Officers should do everything in thier power to solve each crime equally without bias. Who are we to judge? Everyone has a family and people who love them so lets show some respect for the departed and people who are victims of violence; whether it be an "at-risk" teen, a teacher, or an officer of the law. I am praying for the officer and his friends and family, maybe now the city will do something about this crime filled area. I sure hope so.

On another note, what kind

On another note, what kind of world do we live in where people can just get out of a car and start shooting police in the middle of the day and get away with it!? No witnesses?? Also, I understand that the residents are upset because the cops never show up on time or put in a lot of effort when they respond to locals being victimized but i hear of many instances where the residents don't speak up anyway. Are they afraid, i don't know, but it is cowardly to not speak out. Many sources say that police don't even want to go into the neighborhood because they are afraid?!? They need to get a large group of officers into that area and STOP THE CRIME! CONTROL THESE CRIMINALS!

Really? Are you ignorant?

Really? Are you ignorant? Do you know that 30+ officers had to work EVERY WEEKEND THIS SUMMER to provide protection and try to catch the badguys in Creekwood and other projects?

Do you know that other officers WERE FORCED to work overtime every week this summer just to patrol Creekwood, Hillcrest, Houston Moore, etc.?

These areas are already getting more police protection than EVERY OTHER AREA IN THE CITY COMBINED.

They don't need more police. They need more pride in their neighborhood.

"Pride in their neighborhood"? Why would you expect pride... be exibited about their neighborhood when they don't own it, earn it, pay for it, care about it or even clean it? They don't even have pride for themselves much less their neighborhood, otherwise they would band together and wouldn't allow the drug dealing thugs to take over like they have in the first place!


Not only do they get more attention, but because of their recklessness and ignorance other parts of the town go hardly patrolled due to the attention that goes into these neighborhoods! Had a small traffic accident a few weeks back and had to wait for an hour for a patrolman to show up because they were "involved" in something in Hillcrest! The citizens in these neighborhoods need to step up and take the neighborhood back, stop whining and do something! These punk kids and the ignorant adults that allow their children to act out are at fault, stand up and be parents and roll models instead of outcasts and the root problems!

Wrong! What they need are judges and DA's that do their job!

Most of these thugs are lifelong criminals with violent felon sheets a mile long. They commit a crime, go to a nice heated cell for a few months, get out and start all over again while laughing at our judicial system. It's a total joke. Go take a day, sit in district and superior court and watch the circus like antics. It goes on all day...every day!

The WPD and the Sheriff's office all work very hard to stifle crime, especially in that worm infested Creekwood area, but when our blind and stupid judicial process keeps putting the criminals right back into society, what do you expect?


Well put

Lovely area

I have lived in Wilmington since I was born here in 1971.
The one thing I can say is that area has had more murders and shootings than anywhere I have ever seen.
I felt safer outside the GreenZone in northern Baghdad in 06.

Why not do what we did in Ramadi, and Fallujha. Give the residents 24hrs to leave or you are considered hostile.
The reason is the thugs are cowards!! At least over in Iraq, the enemy would stay and fight! These domestic terrorists
Run an hide! And yes they are terrorist!! If we were allowed to deal with them as the enemy instead of a useful citizen. This problem would be gone in less than a week.
If you don't believe me look at how we took over those cities and wiped out insurgents 100%!
Fight force with overwhelming force! Make fighting us a no win battle. That's how u do it!
If we can beat a well trained, motivated, well armed group. We could crush these idiots in hours. Just saying

Darn Right!

Amen! I agree 100%! Want to act in a terror evoking way, then be treated as a terrorist!


Technically I agree with you, but what would it look like for the government to start killing US civilians on US soil? We'd be better off shipping them to an island ala "No Escape" with Ray Liotta

If the citizens of Creekwood

If the citizens of Creekwood want a stronger police presence, then maybe the next time one of their neighbors is involved in a crime, SPEAK UP. How about the residents of Creekwood take charge of their own protection and stop their brothers,sisters, boyfriends, and girlfriends from breaking law and turning them in when they do. The police can only protect those that speak up and talk about the crime. The next time an officer of the law asks a question about a crime that took place in broad daylight in the middle of a crowded park, they should get more information than "No one saw anything."

SPEAK up if they want help

SPEAK up if they want help and that's the root of the problem they seem to act like they are condoning the violence

police shooting

I will be amazed if there aren't riots after this.

Police officers are angry

Police officers are angry because when residents are shot NO ONE talks!!!! By the time Officers arrive on scene of a resident shot The Suspects are long gone. They had a chance to catch the guys so all available officers where dispatched. And its America people Police Officers have alot more pull than residents. Just like the reaction would be different if it were someone more important than a police officer was shot. Get over it always need something to complain about. These guys could have been headed there to rob or kill someone!! BE THANKFUL THEY DID WHAT THEY DID!!!