Deputy recovering after surgery, search for shooter continues

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Submitted: Fri, 10/11/2013 - 3:37am
Updated: Fri, 10/11/2013 - 2:18pm

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.

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111 Comments on "Deputy recovering after surgery, search for shooter continues"

2015 years 8 months ago

Indeed. I wish they came like this when I got hurt in January, they laughed at me at the hospital. Wish it was different. Haunts me everyday.

2015 years 8 months ago

I’ve been down in Wilmington for 3 months. My stores been robbed right near where this happened. I’ve been hit in 2 accidents with people text messaging and not paying attention. I also watch the hookers, drug addicts, homeless, and the thugs walk along Market St all day. Wilmington PD has publicly stated their short staffed. The Feds need to bring their resources in here along with the National Guard. They need to enforce a curfew for these young thugs much like they do in Los Angeles. Too much drugs in this town. The National Guard needs to take patrol efforts away from the city police and put armored vehicles around these housing projects. These young thugs don’t value life. Lock em all up.

2015 years 8 months ago

Why are we dumping $40 million into this Project ? We should empty it out, and trade it, to UNC-W. For student dorms.

I’m sure glad, our brave deputy, will be ok. But it’s time to realize, all the police, deputies, and Highway Patrolmen, in New Hanover County, won’t stop this $40 million problem. When we keep dumping more millions into it.

We need to stop paying 16 year old girls, to have babies, out of wedlock. Stop giving dope dealers, slaps on the wrists. And we need to use the Death Penalty more. Starting with these monsters, who almost murdered our deputy.

2015 years 8 months ago

This is getting ridiculous. I am FAR from prejudice, as I have a black boyfriend, but DAMN!! Every time a young person gets in trouble and takes an innocent life, people are quick to say “It wuznt my cuz! Yo, you people don’t no my fam.” Wake up people…when an innocent life is taken people should pay for the crime. I know the family of the young man arrested last week for the killing in Garden Lakes and it is what it is. People that know the family know that the young man was not raised in an environment like that and know that his parents are wonderful people. The kid got caught up with the wrong crowd and it caught up with him. If he is innocent, why is he still being held? If he was not the trigger man, what happened…was he just holding the gun while his hommie pulled the trigger? It is time to stop the dumb shit and face the facts. People cry and complain because the cops call for backup when an officer is shot, but then they would cry prejudice if no one wants to show up to a 911 call in Creekwood because of all of the known gang activity and violence. Young kids these days have no value or respect for ANYTHING, even a human life. You wanna call yourself a man? Then keep your sorry butt at home and take care of your responsibilities. A real man would not break into another man’s home, a man that has suffered a stroke at that, struggle with him, shoot him, and take HIS money. Maybe when people start to look up to God for help, spend a little more time on their knees, and can finally be MAN or WOMAN enough to take responsibility for the crimes that they commit, we will see some positive changes. Law enforcement has grown by leaps and bounds and detectives are not going to risk their jobs or lawsuits for falsely accusing someone of a first-degree murder charge. A persons past can haunt them for a long time and that is just a result of decisions that people make in life. It is time to face the truth, accept responsibility for things that we do, stop with all the denial, and use some of the negative energy to make a positive change.

Over It
2015 years 8 months ago

Why do upstanding citizens have to put up with this crap, Wilmington leaders? I drive home at lunch on a perfectly good work day to enjoy a delicious bologna sandwich only to see police at the boundaries of my perfectly upstanding neighborhood because of this social experiment catastrophe called Creekwood. I have the greatest respect for our men in blue but I don’t want to see them on manhunts in my neighborhood, thank you very much. Something’s gotta give where Creekwood is concerned and it doesn’t involve throwing another $15 million of our tax money at it.