Maryland officer likely killed by friendly fire during police station 'ambush'

By Andrew V. Pestano and Doug G. Ware  |  Updated March 15, 2016 at 5:48 AM
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WASHINGTON, March 14 (UPI) -- Two of the three brothers in police custody, for the shooting death of a Maryland police officer during an "ambush" over the weekend, filmed the assault with their cellphones, investigators said Monday.

Jacai Colson, 28, a member of the Prince George's County police force for four years, was shot and killed in what police described as an "ambush" on Sunday.

The gunman opened fire about 4:30 p.m local time, and Colson fired back but was struck and later died at a nearby hospital.

The alleged shooter, identified as Michael Ford, was wanted for assault on his wife earlier in South Carolina. Investigators believe he was attempting "suicide by cop" when he fired on Colson. It is not known whether his brothers were directly involved in the ambush.

"This man launched an attack on a police station and engaged several Prince George's County police officers in a gunfight to which they responded heroically," said Henry P. Stawinski III, the county chief of the police, said at a news conference.

The Washington Post reported Monday that two of the brothers filmed the attack with their cellphones.

The Post report also cited officials as saying Colson may have been struck and killed by a bullet from another police officer's gun during the battle.

The brothers were identified as Michael DeAndre Ford, 22, Malik Ford, 21, and Elijah Ford, 18.

Colson, who would have turned 29 this week, was an undercover narcotics officer who typically worked in dangerous situations, Stawinski said.

"Jacai had an infectious smile," John Teletchea, president of the local Fraternal Order of Police, told reporters. "He lit up a room. He was a tremendous personality that made everybody smile and wanted to be everything to everybody."

The shooting happened in front of the department's District III station, next to department headquarters, about 20 miles from downtown Washington.

Shawn Price and Danielle Haynes contributed to this report.

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