LES Police Shooting Suspect Held Without Bail

By Tom Liddy on March 4, 2012 5:36pm 

Police canvass Baruch Drive after a shootout on Feb. 27, 2012.
Police canvass Baruch Drive after a shootout on Feb. 27, 2012.
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DNAinfo/Trevor Kapp

MANHATTAN — A man who unleashed a hail of gunfire at a pair of Lower East Side housing cops last month, nearly hitting one of the officers, was held without bail at his arraignment Sunday.

Luis Martinez, 25, faces attempted murder, attempted assault and weapons possession charges for the wild incident at the Baruch Houses on Feb. 27.

One of the officers, Thomas Richards, narrowly escaped serious injury, thanks to a magazine in his ammo belt, which deflected one of the slugs from Martinez's 9mm Taurus, police said.

According to police, the gun battle erupted at 47 Columbia St. when Richards and his partner, Officer Thomas Dunne, got out of their police van to confront the suspect around 1:45 a.m.

Martinez allegedly fired several times, hitting Richards in the gun belt.

"I've been shot," the officer said, according to court documents.

But Richards was able to return fire and chased after Martinez along with Dunne.

Several blocks away, near 64 Baruch Dr., the suspect turned and fired again, but missed.  Both of the cops shot back and Martinez took off again.

At 64 Baruch Dr., Martinez allegedly turned and tried to fire again, but his gun jammed.  In the exchange a bullet struck him in the leg.

Wounded, the suspect took off into the building, where he was captured without further incident, police said.

His gun was recovered in a trash compactor.

Martinez is due back in court on March 15.

Police Officer Thomas Richards, who was being shot at by a suspect in the Lower East Side, was saved by an ammo magazine on his belt on Feb. 27, 2012.
Police Officer Thomas Richards, who was being shot at by a suspect in the Lower East Side, was saved by an ammo magazine on his belt on Feb. 27, 2012.
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NYPD

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