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Published: Monday, 1/24/2011

Police chief IDs Detroit precinct shooter

BLADE NEWS SERVICES

DETROIT — A relative of the gunman who was fatally shot after wounding four officers at a Detroit police station was scheduled to be sentenced Monday in a double-homicide case, the city's police chief said.

Chief Ralph Godbee identified the shooter as 38-year-old Lamar D. Moore of Detroit, but said he couldn't speculate about a motive in Sunday's shooting at the 6th precinct.

“There's nothing in this that makes sense at all,” Godbee told reporters during a briefing on the case.

Godbee didn't release specifics of the homicide case involving Moore's relative. He said the relative had been scheduled for sentencing Monday.

Paula Hodges, who said she has known Lamar Moore and his siblings for years and is serving as a spokeswoman for them, said the person being sentenced is Moore's brother.

The police station shooting happened around 4:20 p.m. Sunday. The gunman walked through the front door of the one-story building and began firing, according to police. The precinct commander, two sergeants and an officer suffered wounds that were not considered life-threatening.

Commander Brian Davis and one of the sergeants were in stable condition, Godbee said Monday. The others have been treated and released.

Godbee said he has reviewed video of the shooting and seen the officers' “acts of heroism.”

“In a split second their life changed,” Godbee said. “The perpetrator's intent was evil. But these men and women ... performed to the standard that they were trained to.”

Hodges said the police “did what they had to do,” but the family is “trying to figure out what set him off.”

“We can't even imagine him doing that,” a teary-eyed Hodges said of Moore. “He just wasn't, to me, that kind of person. I have nothing but praise for him.”

John Sellers said Moore is a close friend of his family, and that Moore often visited the Sellers' home on the city's west side.

Sellers said he was surprised Moore would walk into a police station and shoot officers.

“He always had a smile on his face,” Sellers said. “I was telling a friend that (police) must have done something to send him over the edge. If you go into a police station, even with the gun raised, it's like committing suicide.”

Rev. Jerome Warfield, chair of the Detroit Police Board of Commissioners, visited the precinct with other members of the board after leaving the hospital where the wounded officers are being treated. He says officers at the precinct “are still somewhat shocked that this happened.”

The shooting left officers to ponder how to protect themselves from the crime they fight daily on the city's tough streets. Like other precincts in the city, the 6th has no metal detectors at the entrance and visitors are permitted to come in and talk face-to-face with police sitting behind a large, rounded desk.

Godbee said precinct security will be upgraded to include wand scanners.

The precinct, built in the mid-1980s, sits between a business district, a residential area and a row of manufacturing buildings.

Sellers said police visited his home Sunday night, asking him questions about Moore, who used the Sellers' Roselawn Street address to receive his mail.

Moore and Sellers' brother, Anthony, were close friends until Anthony Sellers' death from cancer two years ago.

“I guess my brother would work for him around (Moore's) house,” said John Sellers, who last saw Moore during the summer.



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