Police chief: Officer faked shooting, distress call

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Posted at 7:31 PM, Aug 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-01 20:31:11-04

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama police chief says an officer staged a shooting last month to make it look like he was under attack.

Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith said Thursday that their investigation concluded "this entire event was a hoax."

Smith says Officer Keith Buchanan made a distress call early July 21 while patrolling an isolated area. Shots could be heard in the background, and an abandoned police car was found with a bullet hole. He was later found moaning on the ground.

The police chief says investigators determined the event was staged. Smith says they are seeking charges against Buchanan, who has been relieved of his duties.

Smith noted that the incident came during a year where officers have recently been killed or wounded in the line of duty.

It's unclear whether Buchanan has an attorney who could comment.