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Report: Raleigh officer shot ‘at very close range’ while investigating carjacking

January 17, 2019
Raleigh police Officer Charles Ainsworth

As the community rallies behind a Raleigh police officer who was shot while on patrol last week, the Raleigh Police Department issued its preliminary findings regarding the shooting.

The police department is required to provide city leaders with an initial report within five days of an officer firing a weapon on duty, but the five-day report on Officer Charles Ainsworth’s shooting on Jan. 9 provided few new details of the incident.

Ainsworth and Senior Officer B.A. Halpin were responding to a report that a car stolen at gunpoint several days earlier had been spotted on Teakwood Place in southwest Raleigh. Halpin observed two men who appeared to be attempting to break into a vehicle and ordered them to show their hands, the report states.

One man, identified as Antonio Dequan Fletcher, complied, but the other, identified as Cedric Jamal Kearney, turned away from Halpin and immediately encountered Ainsworth. He opened fire “at very close range,” striking Ainsworth multiple times, including in the neck.

Kearney continued firing in Halpin’s direction as he fled on foot, and Halpin returned fire, but did not hit anybody, the report states.

As police responded to the shooting, some officers loaded a wounded Ainsworth into the back of a patrol car and began driving him toward WakeMed. They met an ambulance along the way, and Ainsworth was transferred to the ambulance for the rest of the trip.

He has undergone at least one surgery and was still in the hospital Wednesday. Police haven’t released any details about his condition, saying his family has asked for privacy.

Kearney, 24, of Henderson, was later apprehended in a storage shed outside a house on Wendy Lane, about a half-mile from the shooting scene. He had accidentally locked himself inside and couldn’t get out.

He remains in the Wake County jail under a $2.66 million bond on charges of attempted murder, two counts of assault on a law enforcement officer with a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm, robbery with a dangerous weapon and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. The latter two charges are related to the Jan. 4 carjacking.

Fletcher, 21, of Cary, was charged with possession of a stolen firearm, but authorities said he could face more charges. He remains in the Wake County jail under a $50,000 bond.

Halpin has been placed on administrative duty pending the outcome of police department investigations into the shooting.

The State Bureau of Investigation, which was initially called in to review the shooting, which is standard in officer-involved shootings, never actually investigated the case because Halpin didn’t wound anyone, according to the report.

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