SALISBURY, Md. - Twenty-five year old James Norris of Wilmington, a fugitive wanted by Delaware police, was fatally shot at a traffic stop in Salisbury Monday afternoon.
Norris was wanted by Wilmington police on a number of handgun charges, and was spotted in Delmar heading towards Salisbury. He was a passenger in a burgundy vehicle on Route 13. Officers stopped the car at Philadelphia Avenue around 4:30 PM and attempted to identify and apprehend the suspect. Police say Norris put his hands in his pockets, clenched two handguns, and told an officer one of them was going to die. In fear for his safety, Salisbury Officer Milton Rodriguez pulled his weapon. Preliminary reports indicate both Rodriguez and Norris fired.
"At this time investigators are unsure which of the shots fatally wounded the fugitive. They're not certain if the shot was self-inflicted or was a shot by the police officer," Maryland State Police Spokesperson Greg Shipley said.
Norris was taken to Peninsula Regional Medical Center where he died shortly after 7:30 that evening. A female driver was questioned, but police did not charge her.
Kristen Jennings was staying at the Chesapeake Inn Motel with her family when the gunshots rang out.
"I just couldn't believe it. I was just basically in disbelief that somebody just got shot right there within our distance. It was something that you would just see on a movie scene because I've never seen anything like that before," she said.
Police remain tight-lipped about how many times Norris was shot and where he was shot. They also won't say who is responsible for the gunshot wounds that killed him until the investigation is complete. Police say Norris was also in possession of suspected cocaine. His body was taken to the medical examiner's office in Baltimore for an autopsy. No one else was injured during the incident.
Police say Norris, had his hands clenched around revolver in both jacket pockets. The investigation into this incident is reportedly continuing at this time.
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