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(UPDATE) Elkridge Man in Critical Condition After Police-Involved Shooting

Jeffrey Dustin Nichols, 19, had a pellet gun, according to new information from police.

This article was updated at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 8, to include information that Nichols was armed with a pellet gun, according to police.

Police have identified a man shot in a standoff with officers Monday afternoon as Jeffrey Dustin Nichols, 19, of Grouse Road in Elkridge. Nichols was armed with a pellet gun and had been involved in previous police encounters, police said.

Six officers opened fire after Nichols failed to put down the gun, according to a statement from the Howard County Police Department (HCPD).

Nichols remains in critical condition at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center as of Tuesday, said officials.

This was his third encounter with police in as many months, according to the report; on Sept. 11 and Oct. 7, Nichols was taken into police and then medical custody for attempting to harm himself, according to police.

Around 3 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 7, police approached Nichols on Loudon near Melrose Avenue in Elkridge after a 911 caller reported shots fired in that area, said officials.

When officers arrived, Nichols was carrying a weapon, and police said they ordered him several times to drop it. 

“Officers ordered the man to drop the weapon, but he did not comply,” said HCPD in a written statement.

Police said they followed Nichols, who walked along the railroad tracks to the back parking lot of an industrial complex on the 7400 block of Hi Tech Drive.

“Officers again ordered the man to drop the weapon, but he continued to refuse,” said police. “Officers fired shots at the suspect, striking him.”

In a statement Tuesday afternoon, HCPD said that Nichols was shot a total of eight times in his torso and extremities.

"Investigators have determined [Nichols'] weapon was a pellet gun designed to look like a real, semi-automatic handgun," said HCPD.

Seven police officers involved in the incident are on paid administrative leave as the department investigates, according to officials.

The last time Howard County police were involved in a shooting was during a bank robbery in 2008, said Sherry Llewellyn, spokeswoman for the department. In that case, a Bank of America was robbed in Clarksville and three suspects took police on a chase to Montgomery County before officers opened fire on one of the three suspects and killed him, according to NBC Washington.

The article below was originally reported at 4 a.m.

Police have identified a man shot in a standoff with officers Monday afternoon as Jeffrey Dustin Nichols, 19, of Grouse Road in Elkridge. 

Officers opened fire after Nichols failed to put down his gun, according to a statement from the Howard County Police Department (HCPD).

Nichols was in critical condition at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center Monday evening, said HCPD.

Around 3 p.m., police approached Nichols on Loudon near Melrose Avenue in Elkridge after a 911 caller reported a man with a weapon in that area, reported officials.

When officers arrived, Nichols was carrying a handgun and police said they ordered him several times to drop his weapon. 

“Officers ordered the man to drop the weapon, but he did not comply,” said HCPD in a written statement.

Police said they followed Nichols, who walked along the railroad tracks to the back parking lot of an industrial complex on the 7400 block of Hi Tech Drive.

“Officers again ordered the man to drop the weapon, but he continued to refuse,” said police. “Officers fired shots at the suspect, striking him.”

Nichols was taken by ambulance to shock trauma, according to police.

Sherry Llewellyn, spokeswoman for HCPD, said the officers involved were in good condition as of Monday afternoon.

At 4:30 p.m., Llewellyn said the area at Hi Tech Drive would be closed off for several hours.

“We immediately launch an internal investigation. There’s a lot of work to be done,” said Llewellyn, who explained that HCPD would interview each officer separately and forensic investigators would be evaluating the crime scene on Hi Tech Drive.

Officials said that the area is safe. “No one’s in any danger,” said Llewellyn. “This person is clearly at the hospital, so there’s nobody on the loose.”

In a statement Monday evening, HCPD said that it was still working to confirm how many police were involved in the incident.

The last time Howard County police were involved in a shooting was during a bank robbery in 2008, said Llewellyn. In that case, a Bank of America was robbed in Clarksville and three suspects took police on a chase to Montgomery County before officers opened fire on one of the three suspects and killed him, according to NBC Washington.

Elizabeth Janney November 14, 2011 at 10:02 PM
We understand this is a difficult time and ask everyone to please treat others with respect.
Bernie Trenary November 14, 2011 at 10:08 PM
Thanks again, Elizabeth! So sad people resort to this, especially under these circumstances!
jeff richardson November 14, 2011 at 11:44 PM
better watch what you say
J.Me Bray November 23, 2011 at 01:58 AM
This is very heart breaking to know a young man, screaming at the top of his lungs for help, was shot instead.......Some people believe it is easier to erase a problem than to deal with it, this was not an erasable problem, this was a young man who "God" gave a soul to for a reason, not to be shot in the woods or whatever for caring a BB gun. And even if he was, and he was, you don't shoot a kid that is 19 8 times because "you are trying to stop the problem" search your souls and see if you come up with the same ending.....Not if you are human. Hats off to his friends for defending him to the very end. The great thing is he is back with his maker, kids with these kind of broken hearts only have one place to go, and that is "Heaven" "God rest your young soul" This young man is actually my husbands second cousin, and sad to say, they never even met but that does not mean he is not affected by this. Help people when they suffer silently but scream on the tops of their lungs with anger and self inflicted wounds. They are trying to match their insides, pay attention to that and maybe one day you can save someone or just help them. We all can. "God" be with all of you that are suffering from this, but know how blessed you are to have known him. Sarah, I hope you find peace with this one day. He would be so very proud of you for the way you have stood up for him. You obviously were a great friend to him, when he was here and even after he is gone. I am sorry for your loss. J.Me Bray
Bernie Trenary November 23, 2011 at 02:09 AM
Very nice, J.Me, and I am so sorry for Jeffrey's family and friends!

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