LINCOLN HEIGHTS, OH (FOX19) - A Woodlawn police officer is lucky to be alive after he was forced to dodge several bullets in Lincoln Heights.
Woodlawn Police Officer Timothy Barrett was originally called to assist with a report of shots fired in Lincoln Heights around midnight. Three suspects were taken into custody for that initial call.
Officer Barrett was stopped at the intersection of Leggett and VanBuren around 1 a.m. when he noticed four people, three of which had long rifles aimed at his cruiser. The officer ducked down into his cruiser while 10 to 20 rounds were shot at his cruiser. He hit the gas to leave the area. Amazingly, he was not injured in the shooting.
Police radio traffic revealed the terrifying minutes Ofc. Barrett lived through after the shooting.
"I need anybody out here with an assault rifle," Ofc. Barrett yelled over the radio. "Get 32 down here."
Seconds later, Ofc. Barrett called for back-up, first warning them about the pending danger.
"Tell them to be careful coming up Leggett," Ofc. Barrett said. "They're sitting in ambush on the east side of the street two blocks south of where Lincoln Heights is right now."
Ofc. Barrett's cruiser was badly damaged. The marked cruiser's rear and side windows were blown out, tires were destroyed, and bullets were even found in the headrest.
Lincoln Heights Police Chief Col. Ron Twitty said Ofc. Barrett's quick thinking was key.
"He floored the accelerator, slid down in his seat and started communication that he was being fired on and that was the right thing to do," said Chief Twitty.
Twitty says he has not doubt that the officer was targeted.
"There is no doubt in my mind that once they started firing they intended to kill him," said Chief Ron Twitty with the Lincoln Heights Police Department.
Barrett is on paid administrative leave as the investigation continues
Police had several blocks of Lincoln Heights shut down for much of the morning Thursday, and also called in K9 units and a helicopter to assist in the search, but so far, no suspects have been arrested.
Anyone with information should call Crimestoppers at 513-352-3040.