MASON, OH (AP/WCMH) -A man accused in a shooting at an apartment complex that left a sheriff’s deputy and the suspect’s father wounded is facing preliminary charges that include attempted aggravated murder, authorities in southwest Ohio said Friday.
Mohammed Abdou Laghaoui, 19, was taken custody at about 4:30 a.m. after he returned to the complex in Deerfield Township, where the shooting took place, said Warren County Sheriff Larry Sims. The town is about 25 miles northeast of Cincinnati.
Residents of the apartment complex say the exchange of gunfire was loud and frightening. Tim King lives a couple of doors away from Laghaoui and says he heard 12 to 18 shots in all.
Debbie Archambeault lives right next door.
“I didn’t even know there was a domestic because I heard no arguing, no fighting,” Archambeault said. “I heard nothing going on at all until I heard the gunshots and then it was all pretty quick after that.”
Laghaoui initially fled the scene, leading to a seven-hour manhunt with helicopters and K-9 units.
Laghaoui is also accused of firing at one of his neighbors.
Jason Ratliff says he tried to stop Laghaoui, unaware that he had a gun.
“I didn’t see a gun and I was like ‘hey buddy how you doing?’, Ratliff said. “He said ‘leave me alone.’ And I was like ‘let me talk to you for a second.’ And he was like ‘go away’ and as he did that he turned and I saw his opposite hand come up under the gun and I knew what was about to happen. I saw the first muzzle flash. I dove on the ground and then the second one went off.”
Ratliff was not injured.
Sheriff Sims identified the injured officer as Deputy Katie Barnes, who has been on the job for seven-and-half years starting as a corrections officer.
Barnes was responding to a domestic situation at the apartment complex Thursday night when she was shot in the lower abdomen, Sims said at a news conference.
“She’s calling for help, she’s reeling from the shots being fired at her, she’s returning fire and initially, unbeknownst to her, she had already been struck by one of the rounds.”
Barnes was treated and released from a hospital Friday morning.
The suspect’s father was shot in the hand. Sims did not know the latest on the man’s condition, but thought he may need surgery.
Sims said Laghaoui was armed with an AK47 assault rifle that has yet to be recovered. Laghaoui is being held at the Warren County Jail on preliminary charges of attempted murder, attempted aggravated murder and felonious assault. A court appearance was planned for Monday.
A shelter-in-place order was lifted in Deerfield Township, shortly after 5 a.m.
Sims described Laghaoui’s arrest at the apartment complex as uneventful. “There were no issues with him whatsoever,” he said.
Sims said investigators found six spent rounds from an AK-47 near where Barnes was shot. He said she returned fire four times with her revolver.
“We are confident she did everything appropriate,” he told reporters at the news conference in Lebanon.
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