Update: New Winston-Salem PD Chief On Admin Duty

5:11 PM, Jun 27, 2013   |    comments
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Winston-Salem, N.C. - Police are still actively looking for the man who reportedly had a gun on Jackson Street, Wednesday, but they can't find him. Incoming Police Chief Barry Rountree responded as backup to the call. When he arrived, Rountree says he was approached by an aggressive dog. He shot it, but a bullet fragment hit the dog's owner.

Rountree's actions and willingness to respond have impressed the department.

"It has a very positive outcome there with the troops knowing that their leader is willing to put his life on the line just like we expect them to do. It shows this department and this community that we have a leader who leads from the front. That's very important when you talk about the type of work we do," Acting Chief David Clayton said.

People in the community have also taken note of Rountree's quick response.

"I have respect for all of our officers who put their lives on the line every day and go out and do service," Anthony Evans said.

Mary Jo Anderson added, "I feel confident in knowing he will be the chief of police knowing that he's going to respond to any call if he's in the area. I think that's great, especially if there is an aggressive dog involved, knowing he took action to protect himself as well as any citizen."

However, Tamara Whitt, the woman hit by the ricocheted bullet, has a different opinion. She's ok, but she questions why he fired the shot.

"I think it was poor judgment in the officer really because I was still so close. I just don't feel like he should have even fired a gun with me being that close," Whitt said.

The SBI is investigating the shooting. The district attorney will review the SBI's findings and decide whether to file charges. Rountree will remain on administrative duty, which means he can't carry a gun or drive a police car.

Rountree will still be sworn in as chief on Sunday. But, will remain on administrative duty. David Clayton will be acting chief until the investigation is complete.

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