Two Braintree police officers and a police dog were shot while searching for a man suspected in a domestic incident in the city Friday. The officers were in surgery but are expected to survive, while the suspect and police dog were killed, authorities said.
The suspect, identified Friday night as 34-year-old Andrew Homen of Brockton, appeared to have been lying in wait for the officers in the woods near an apartment complex when he opened fire, according to Norfolk County District Attorney Michael Morrissey.
"To some people it felt like an ambush," he said.
A law enforcement source told NBC10 Boston that one officer was taken to Boston Medical Center, another to South Shore Hospital. Both have injuries that are considered non-life-threatening, though Morrissey said they were serious. He didn't confirm what hospitals the officers were taken to.
Homen was taken to Milton Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to Morrissey.
According to authorities, Homen had warrants out for his arrest. He was found with two guns.
The incident unfolded about 12:45 p.m. on the Braintree-Weymouth line, near the Braintree Village Apartments complex on McCusker Drive near Commercial Street.
It began with a domestic violence call that brought out most of the Braintree Police Department to investigate, Chief Mark Dubois said. The woman who reported the incident said the man was armed and had fled into the woods, and the department waited about 45 minutes to bring in the K-9 before following him.
The exchange of gunfire took place about 100 yards into the heavily wooded area, "where they were essentially ambushed," he said.
He called the killing of the police dog, Kitt, "tragic," and that he'd been working with the same handler for his entire time with the department. A procession was held in the dog's honor Friday.
"That dog is incredible. A very successful 12-year veteran of the police department," Dubois said.
One officer walked into the ambulance with what appeared to be an arm injury, the other was taken on a stretcher to a waiting ambulance.
NBC10 Boston photographer Al Castillo was at the scene as the search unfolded and the gunfire -- dozens of gunshots -- broke out.
He said he saw a small police presence when he arrived to the scene. The search focused on train tracks, then the gunshots rang out: "It sounded like 50 rounds, minimum."
A man who lives nearby said he heard what he initially thought were fireworks, then police yelling at a man to surrender.
“I looked out the door and saw these cop cars pulling up,” said Robert Cooke. “I could hear them yelling. It all happened on the other side of the river behind my house. ... I could hear cops yelling at somebody, ‘Get down on the ground! Get down on the ground!’ and he’s yelling, ‘What did I do?’”
He said that part of Braintree is normally quiet: “You see police go by every now and then – never anything too severe.”
A heavy police presence and ambulances were seen in the area as the investigation unfolded.