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How to Become a Bounty Hunter

A Twist in ATF Task Force Shooting May Make ‘Friendly Fire’ Issue More Complicated

ATF task force members blocked in suspect's car in Detroit.

By Allan Lengel
Deadline Detroit

DETROIT — Investigators are trying to determine if one of two wounded Detroit cops on an ATF task force was injured as a result of friendly fire in a shootout with a murder suspect last week on the city’s west side.

That may not be easy.

Law enforcement sources familiar with the investigation being conducted by Detroit Police and Michigan State Police say the officer suffered injuries to the head from metal-like fragments that may not be from a bullet. Instead, the fragments may have come from something like metal from a car that was struck by a bullet, sources said.

Authorities say that Matthew Joseph, 23, a murder suspect who was on parole for an armed robbery conviction, opened fire on task force members as they tried to arrest him by blocking his car at Linwood and Hooker shortly after 6 p.m. last Tuesday. Officers returned fire and killed him.

Sources say Joseph had a .40-caliber gun, the same caliber Detroit police use. One officer was shot twice in the leg. The officer who suffered head injuries remains in Ford Hospital in serious condition.

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