A Minneapolis police officer is in the hospital recovering after being shot on the 1100 block of 24th Avenue N. just before 5 a.m. Saturday morning.
Two Minneapolis police officers had just finished handling a domestic assault and burglary call when they were shot at while outside of their squad car. The injured officer's partner drove him directly to North Memorial hospital where he is listed in stable condition.
"Didn't seem at all to us that there would be any reason to shoot this officer other than him being targeted for doing his job," Assistant Minneapolis Police Chief Matt Clark said.
"The shooting attack on a Minneapolis police officer early this morning is a cowardly act, and we are sparing no effort to apprehend and bring to justice whoever is responsible for it," Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges said Saturday morning.
After 7 hours of searching for the suspect, police took 43-year-old Andrew Neal into custody. Neal was found inside of his apartment building on Logan Avenue S. He is under arrest for domestic aggravated assault, probable cause burglary, and a probation violation.
Clark said in a press conference Saturday afternoon that Neal is under arrest for a probation violation in connection to the officer shooting – "It's clear to us this officer was shot in relation to this call," he said.
The name of the injured Minneapolis police officer still has yet to be released to the public.
"There is little doubt that an officer was the intended target of this shooting and that this officer just happened to be the one who was there," Minneapolis Police Chief Harteau said. "This is a reminder to all that every one of our officers face such danger simply because they choose to wear a uniform."
Investigators are currently working to identify how exactly Neal was involved in the shooting. His criminal history consists of several convictions including second-degree felony assault and first-degree felony assault.
"They deserve our support and gratitude," Chief Harteau said. "We ask for continued prayers for this officer, his family and every officer who is out protecting and serving their communities."
As police continue to piece together answers, north side neighbors have the wounded officer in their thoughts and neighborhood safety on their minds.
"This has got to stop," said Johnny Cool. "If it ain't the police it's other people. The community's got to come together, got to get these kids in school, find them something to do. I feel sorry for the officer -- my condolences to his family. I hope he pulls through."