BEDFORD-STUYVESANT, Brooklyn — An NYPD detective was shot in the leg in Brooklyn Friday as he and his partners tried to apprehend a man wanted in connection with a domestic violence robbery that involved a gun, police officials said.
Detective Miguel Soto, who has been on the force for seven years, was struck in the upper right thigh. The bullet went into his thigh and exited his body. He was treated for non-life threatening injuries.
“We should be grateful of the outcome today, particularly as we come off yesterday’s one-year anniversary of the brutal murder of Detective Miosotis Familia in the Bronx,” NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill said, referring to the July 5, 2017, killing of Familia as she sat in her patrol car.
Hours after the shooting, Soto left Kings County Hospital in a wheelchair with his young son on his lap. He was greeted by a standing ovation.
"This morning's incident highlights the extreme dangerous work the men and women with the NYPD perform on a daily basis," O'Neill said.
At about 6:30 a.m., Soto was driving down Kingston Avenue near Tompkins Avenue in an unmarked vehicle with two other warrants officers when they recognized a man who was wanted on suspicion of domestic robbery, the police commissioner said.
The officers made a U-turn and the suspect, identified as Kelvin Stichel, started running.
The officers got in front of the suspect, exited the vehicle and ran after him. After the officers identified themselves and ordered Stichel to show his hands, the suspect allegedly pulled out a gun and fired.
A call came in shortly before 7 a.m. about a police officer shot near Decatur Street and Throop Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant.
O'Neill said Stichel shot about six rounds, striking the detective who then returned fire. The officers fired "multiple rounds," he said.
While Soto was wounded, the other officers ran after Stichel.
Police followed a trail of blood to the home of the alleged gunman's girlfriend along Kingston Avenue and Herkimer Street. They cornered him in a third-floor hallway and took him into custody, officials said.
Stichel has numerous prior arrests on his record, including for assaulting a police officer, O'Neill said. In this instance, he was wanted for "a number of things," with the most serious charge being domestic violence robbery involving a gun, O'Neill said.
Stichel was shot in the forearm and was taken to a hospital for treatment. He's expected to survive.
During a news conference Friday morning, while Soto was still in the hospital, O'Neill said the detective was "in great spirits."
“He’s a big guy — about 6’2”, 230 — and he was more concerned about his two partners than he was about himself. He’s with his family up there. He’s with his wife and he’s in great spirits. He’s in absolutely great spirits. He’s a real tough guy," O'Neill said.
Investigators recovered what is believed to be the shooter's .45-caliber gun, pictured at right, in the trash, officials said.
Stichel's girlfriend is being questioned by police, sources told PIX11.