Suspected gunman in Cleveland officer shooting identified, has lengthy criminal record

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CLEVELAND -- A man has been arrested after shooting a Cleveland Police officer and one other person early Saturday morning.

Police identified the suspected gunman as 30-year-old Jonathan A. Chambers.

Just after 4 a.m. a 5-year veteran officer was shot in the legs in the line of duty and suffered serious injuries. He was taken to University Hospitals for surgery. Cleveland police said he is in stable condition and is expected to make a full recovery.

"His family is with him at the hospital as well as officers from his shift and around the city so he's being supported as well," said Commander Brandon Kutz with the Cleveland Police Department.

Police officers were responding to a call of shots fired near the intersection of East 121st Street and Cromwell Avenue on the city's southeast side.

While officers just started to get out of their car, gunshots rang out in the darkness.

Chambers reportedly fired at the officers with an assault rifle.

The high powered bullet pierced the police car's door, ripping through the officer's leg and then traveling into his other leg.

"That person fired at police officers who were just doing their jobs and were just trying to protect their city here," said Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams.

Chambers was reportedly able to flee, triggering a city wide manhunt.

"We definitely want to ask for the community's help in finding this person. Our officers are out there too searching non stop until we find the person who committed this crime," Williams said.

Six hours after the officer was wounded, police announced they captured Chambers.

"Thank God he's doing better and we're not talking about a funeral anywhere," said CPPA President Jeff Follmer.

Police union president Jeff Follmer visited the officer in the hospital.

"He's doing the best possible for right now after surgery. He had a couple gun shot wounds to his legs. He has a bullet still stuck in his leg," Follmer said.

Follmer is breathing a sigh of relief that the gunman is off the streets.

"You don't want anybody else getting hurt. It's a relief he's in custody. The neighborhood and the police officers will rest," Follmer said.

At the scene, police also found a man who had been shot in a vehicle near the house.  Police said that victim had been shot before officers arrived on the scene and was also taken to University Hospitals.

Sources tell the I-TEAM that Chambers is being held in jail for felonious assault of a police officer.

Documents from the Cleveland Municipal Court reveal that Chambers has a lengthy criminal history dating back to 2006.  He was most recently charged with domestic violence and aggravated menacing.  That case was dismissed just this week.  Records also show that Chambers was sentenced to prison back in 2010 for multiple charges, including sexual imposition and aggravated assault.

Continuing coverage, here.

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