ST. LOUIS — Police shot and killed a suspect during a standoff with the SWAT team in south St. Louis. Officers tell FOX 2 that the shooting happened in the 5400 block of south Kingshighway. The 21-year-old white male suspect died from the gunshot wound. His mother identifies the suspect as Isaiah Hammett.
Hammett was part of an investigation into drug sales. They believe the he was involved in criminal activity. Police say he has a criminal past. They did not elaborate as to what that history involves.
The SWAT team was at the home Wednesday morning to execute a search warrant. Police say they announced their presence, opened a door, tossed in a flash bang into the home as a diversion and then went inside.
The SWAT team says they were under fire after they went into the house. Police say Hammett fired many shots at them from an assault rifle. Police recovered the weapon from the scene and bought it to show reporters at a press conference. They say the gun can fire bullets that can pierce the SWAT team's armor.
Officers returned fire, striking a suspect. Hammett died as a result of the officer's shots. There were no officers injured during the shoot-out.
The suspect's AK-47 assault rifle, which was used to fire the shots at officers, was recovered from the home. Police say they also found 14 additional weapons and some marijuana.
Police believe Hammett was watching from surveillance cameras placed outside the home. They suspect he was using the cameras to warn him of the officers presence.
Neighbors report hearing about three rounds of semi-automatic gunfire. Several family members were at the scene immediately following the shooting. They were overcome with grief and outraged with police.
Police say that they didn't know anyone else was home when they went inside. The suspect is known to take care of his grandfather. He was also inside the home during the gunfight inside the home.
"It's my kid you know he took care of my dad that`s all he did," said mother Gina Torres.
Gina Torres said her son served as his grandfather`s caregiver for several years. The grandfather, 71-year-old Dennis Torres is a veteran who said he has guns in his house. He said he was in his bedroom when he heard shots fired.
"My grandson came in, took me out of bed, put me on the floor, and he says somebody`s trying to break into the house. The next thing I know, I hear more shots while he`s putting me on the floor. After that I got up heard a bunch of yelling. Go into the front of the house I see my grandson on the floor dead," said Dennis Torres.
He says that if he had been able to get to a gun he would have fired. That is because he did not know who was breaking into his home.
It is still being determined how many officers fired shots. Per department policy, all officers who fired shots will be placed on administrative leave.