POLICE: Detectives “intentionally ambushed” by two suspects on Charleston’s East End

West Virginia

Lt. Autumn Davis with the Charleston Police Department said Friday that two undercover detectives with the department’s Special Enforcement Unit were “intentionally ambushed” on the job.

According to court documents, on Thursday, March 7, 2019, those detectives first came into contact with Christpher Zackowski in the area of Lewis Street and Ruffner Avenue.  

They noted that he was extremely aggressive, Davis said.

The detectives said Zackowski attempted to flee on foot, but was detained.  Because the detectives involved in this incident work undercover, 13 News is not releasing their identities.

While the detective was attempting to place Zackowski under arrest, the second suspect, Stephon Adams, ambushed the officer from behind and placed him in a “lethal choke hold”, court documents stated.

Both parties went to the ground, where a struggle ensued.

Lt. Davis said, “During the ambush, Zackowski stated several times, ‘They are the police’.

Both suspects were placed under arrest and charged with battery on a police officer and obstruction.

The detectives were uninjured.

Lt. Davis said officers found several shards of glass in Adams’ pocket, which they believed were intended to be used as weapons.

The memo, Davis said, was sent to each officer on the Charleston Police Department. 

The goal is to ensure that officers know the two suspects are to be considered dangerous if approached. “Officer safety and making sure every officer goes home at the end of their shift is the first priority,” Davis said.

Adams and Zackowski are being held at South Central Regional Jail.

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