During a news conference today, authorities said that around 10:42 p.m. Thursday, two uniformed officers in an unmarked car were responding to earlier reports of gunshots when they approached a man in the capital's Northeast section.
Police Chief Peter Newsham today identified the man as 47-year-old Timothy Lionel Williams, whom he said ran and then stopped. He and the officers struggled and shots were fired, police said.
All three were hit by gunfire. Williams later died at a hospital; the two officers were hospitalized with nonlife-threatening injuries, police said. One officer underwent surgery Thursday night. Newsham said one officer already had been released.
Newsham said investigators believe that just one of the officers fired a weapon.
He also said today that a semi-automatic handgun that police believed belonged to Williams had been recovered at the scene of the shooting. Newsham could not say where investigators found the gun in proximity to Williams' body.
It was not clear whether Williams shot either of the officers, police said. However, authorities said there were indications that the weapon had been fired.
Newsham said that both officers were wearing activated body cameras and that he'd reviewed the footage. He said the mayor would review the footage and decide when to release it.
Both officers are on paid administrative leave, which is standard protocol. Newsham said they were at least three-year veterans of the force and were part of a crime-suppression team focused on getting illegal firearms off the street in the capital's Fifth District.
He advised people who'd seen the video posted on Twitter not to jump to conclusions. He said that investigators had spoken with the person who'd taken the video and that the camera person had told police that he'd started recording after much of the incident had occurred.
"Whatever you have seen so far is incomplete so to draw any conclusions about exactly what happened is just -- I don't recommend doing that because I can't say, from everything I've seen and everything that I know, what happened," he said.
Newsham said that more witnesses are expected to come forward.