Sleep cell terror attack? Syrian "refugee" guns down three officers in incident caught on body camera

FARGO, ND – The Fargo Police Department in North Dakota has released body-worn camera video from July 14th when three officers were gunned down by a man apparently bent on killing as many people as he could. Tragically, one of those officers lost his life before another officer was able to return fire and stop the lethal threat.

It has been said many times over that there is no "normal" or "routine" investigation for a police officer as every call they respond to may have the potential to be life-threatening. That was once again shown to be accurate in this situation, as three officers from the Fargo Police Department were investigating a traffic crash when a very well-armed man decided to start firing with what was described as an “AK-47.”

The body-worn camera released belonged to that of Ofc. Zach Robinson, showing his perspective as he stood on the street by a vehicle that had been in a crash. At one point, Ofc. Robinson’s camera cought a glimpse of three officers standing on the edge of the road on the property of an apparent business.

As Ofc. Robinson walked along the car, gunshots being fired in rapid succession can be heard, and Ofc. Robinson can be seen attempting to get concealment behind the crashed vehicle. Ofc. Robinson radios the situation advising there were “shots fired.”

Ofc. Robinson moved out from around the front of the crashed vehicle and a man, dressed in a black top, can be seen on the driver’s side of a vehicle. Ofc. Robinson returned fire at the man who quickly ran to the passenger side of the vehicle while Ofc. Robinson and the gunman exchanged gunfire.

After a few seconds, the gunfire ceased, which allowed Ofc. Robinson to run toward the man with the gun while notifying dispatch there were three officers down. As Ofc. Robinson ran toward the vehicle the man was behind, his body-worn camera picked up the three officers lying on the ground with the head of one of them blurred out.

Ofc. Robinson approached and the man can be seen lying on his right side. Numerous commands were given for the man to stop moving and to put his hands up. Instead of complying, the man rolled onto his back, moved the long gun, and appeared to have transitioned to a handgun which is in his right hand. Seeing the lethal threat, Ofc. Robinson opened fire again.

Ofc. Robinson had to move behind concealment again, this time, utilizing the hood of the vehicle the gunman is lying behind, and reloaded his firearm. The man can be seen holding what appears to be the same handgun in his right hand as Ofc. Robinson ordered him to drop the gun several times before opening fire again.

The man rolled over again and grabs hold of the long gun while Ofc. Robinson yelled several times for him to drop the gun. Ofc. Robinson was able to reposition behind the vehicle where the gunman laid and his camera captured the suspect pointing a gun towards where the officer had been standing.

Ofc. Robinson again fired; this time, the lethal threat was stopped as a second officer is seen approaching. It is clear the man had succumbed to his wounds at that point.

The Fargo Police Department reported Ofc. Jake Wallin was killed at the scene while Officers Andrew Dotas and Tyler Hawes were struck but survived. A bystander, Karlee Koswick, was injured after being struck twice during the shooting rampage.

Police identified the gunman as 37-year-old Mohamad Barakat, who originally entered the country as a Syrian refugee in 2012 before becoming a United States citizen in 2019. Police reported finding several firearms, 1,800 rounds of ammunition along with a homemade grenade and other explosives in his vehicle.

Police further reported Barakat’s internet searches over the last five years included topics like “kill fast,” “explosive ammo,” incendiary rounds,” “mass shooting events” and another for “area events where there are crowds.”
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