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Christian Eppinger, a gang member accused of shooting an Atlanta police officer six times, has been released on bail.
Eppinger, 22, allegedly shot an officer six times during an altercation outside the Colonial Square Apartments in Atlanta, Georgia, while police were serving a warrant for his arrest.
The suspect was denied bail immediately after the shooting, but a new ruling on Tuesday overturned that ruling. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is scheduled to hold a press conference Wednesday with Police Chief Rodney Bryant to discuss the bond agreement.
INDIANA COP WOUNDED BY SHOOTING; THE SUSPECT ARRESTED, THE OTHER ON THE GO
“He will have a long road to recovery ahead of him,” Deputy Chief Darin Schierbaum said during a press briefing in February. “…What happened today is the challenge we face here in Atlanta and in cities across the country, where individuals are being heavily armed…and being released into our communities. , who are being assaulted at record levels across the country and placed in communities with imminent danger.”
Officer David Rodgers, who has been with the department since 2011, was pursuing 22-year-old suspect Christian Eppinger, wanted for aggravated assault and robbery in October 2021, at an apartment complex on Old Hapeville Road at around 1.15pm on Monday. 11 year veteran officer of Atlanta Police Department, Rodgers was hit six times while executing the warrant. After Eppinger allegedly opened fire on Rodgers, another officer began returning fire. Eppinger was untouched.
Eppinger then fled to the apartment complex, where police located and arrested him “in a short time,” according to Schierbaum.
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Eppinger’s warrant stems from an October 2021 incident in which he and another suspect approached victim Darius Smith in a park and demanded that he put on his “chain,” according to a police report dated 12 october. He is said to be a member of “Young Slime Life” – a street gang brandishing YSL tattoos and emblems inspired by haute couture brand Yves Saint Laurent.
“The victim said one suspect had his gun pointed at his head while the other had his gun pointed at his ribs. The suspects then stole his diamond earrings, diamond and gold necklace , his two iPhones and his car keys” before fleeing, the police report said.
So far in 2022, six police officers have been shot and killed on the job, according to the Memorial page of the shot officer, which tracks the deaths of officers in the line of duty. More police officers were murdered in 2021 than any previous year since 1995.