Police in Philadelphia have credited a gun owner with saving a police officer who was being attacked by a group of teenagers.
“There were 40 kids. If it wasn’t for the good Samaritan stepping forward, he’d have been dead meat,” Upper Darby Police Superintendent Michael Chitwood told Philly.com. “There’s no doubt they would have attacked him.”
On Friday, officers responded to three fights near Upper Darby High School. At the end, eight teenagers were charged with crimes, and two officers were injured so badly it’s an open question whether they’ll ever return to work, Chitwood said.
An officer was trying to break up a fight on Wayne Avenue when both of the parties in the fight turned on him, and he was beaten as a large crowd watched.
Chitwood added that the cop was “calling for an assist officer at the same time.”
“There’s a crowd of 40 or 50 kids watching the fight, and they all move in toward the officer,” he said, and he added that “there’s no doubt they would have attacked him.”
Eventually, a man with a gun in hand approached the location and told the teenagers to back off, and held them at bay as the other officer called for backup.
“He had the gun in his hand, but he didn’t point it at the kids, he just told them to back off,” Chitwood said. “If this guy didn’t come out and come to the aid of the officer, this officer would have had significant problems.”
The officer who broke up the fight on Wayne Avenue suffered hand injuries, and an officer who responded to the call for backup suffered a significant leg injury.
The gun owner was identified as a 35-year-old conceal-carry permit holder.
Chitwood said that the officer was kicked by one of the teens until other officers arrived on the scene.
The Metro reported that every afternoon at around 3 p.m., cops patrol around Upper Darby High School as thousands of kids get out of school. There were three fights in areas around the school on that day.
“There’s thousands of kids that walk to and from that school without a problem,” Chitwood said, per the Metro. “But every once in awhile, you get these wannabe gangsters, and if they want to be gangsters, we’ll treat them like gangsters.”