ATLANTA - The Atlanta Police Department identified an officer shot while attempting to arrest an armed robbery suspect on Feb. 7 in southwest Atlanta.
Police said Officer David Rodgers is in stable condition and recovering after he was rushed to Grady Memorial Hospital on Monday with multiple gunshot wounds.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation said 22-year-old Christian Eppinger shot Rodgers, who was executing a warrant for armed robbery.
Eppinger was taken into custody, police said.
Police said the incident happened around 1:15 p.m. in the 2600 block of Old Hapeville Road. Officers identified the suspect and attempted to make an arrest.
Atlanta Police Deputy Chief Darin Schierbaum said the officer, now identified as Rodgers and 22-year-old Christian Eppinger got into a brief scuffle during the attempted arrest. At some point, the major said Eppinger pulled out a concealed handgun and shot the officer "multiple times."
"This individual was armed and this individual was looking to cause harm at the appropriate time. It happened to be an Atlanta police officer that was able to intervene before he was able to rob anybody else before he was able to assault anyone else," Schierbaum said.
Who is Officer David Rodgers?
The Atlanta Police Department said Rodgers is an 11-year law enforcement veteran.
Police said Rodgers joined the Atlanta Police Department in 2011.
Rodgers was recovering at Grady Memorial Hospital on Monday and was able to speak to other officers and medical personnel.
Officials said he has a long road to recover.
Who is the suspect, Christian Eppinger?
Not much is yet known about 22-year-old Christian Eppinger or the crime for which was originally accused.
During a press conference on Monday afternoon, Atlanta Police Deputy Chief Darin Schierbaum called the suspect, later identified by investigators as Eppinger, a known gang member and said he was wanted in connection to an armed robbery along Cleveland Avenue in October 2021.
Police have released the mug shot and new details about the man they call a known gang member who fired multiple times at an 11-year veteran of the Atlanta Police Department who was attempting to take him into custody.
According to the police report, he held a man at gunpoint and made off with valuable items such as a Rolex watch.
Police did not immediately release details about specific additional charges for Eppinger other than he "will face a series of felony charges."
Eppinger was booked into the Fulton County jail.
Combating violent crimes in Atlanta
Atlanta Police Deputy Chief Darin Schierbaum said the department will not be deterred by such violence against their officers. He said the department understands the undertaking they have been tasked with to bring down violent crime in the city.
The deputy chief would not release specifics about Monday's operation that led to one of their own being shot. He said those details would come out at the appropriate time.
"What happened today is the challenge that we are against here in Atlanta and cities across this country where individuals are heavily armed, heavy proliferation of guns, and are loose in our communities and causing harm our police officers, who are being assaulted at record numbers across the country and placing communities and imminent harm," said Schierbaum. "This department will not be detoured."
Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens went to the hospital, police said.