Monday morning (Aug. 1), Baltimore police officers entered Korryn Shandawn Gaines’ apartment building with the intent of carrying out arrest warrants on Gaines and an unidentified male. What ensued was a shoot out that left a woman dead, a child injured and a police department treading carefully through an onslaught of questions and speculation.
Reportedly, a bench warrant for Gaines’ arrest had been issued following her failure to appear in court to face charges related to cases of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest following a traffic stop back in March. The unidentified male was wanted on assault charges. After identifying themselves and knocking on the door of her apartment for a period of time, officers acquired the key to Gaines’ apartment from her landlord and opened the door to find themselves face to face with the barrel of the long gun Gaines reportedly wielded at them while seated on the floor holding her 5-year-old son.
According to Baltimore County Police Spokesperson Elise Armacost, the building was evacuated and officers engaged in an hours-long stand off with Gaines as they tried to negotiate with her. Armacost says that Gaines continuously threatened officers verbally with her weapon pointed at them. Following the threats, an officer fired at Gaines, she fired several shots back, which were returned with more shots from officers, this time striking the 23-year-old multiple times and killing her. Her 5-year-old son which she was holding was injured during the encounter, but is said to have non-life threatening wounds and is expected to survive.
With Gaines now deceased and the officers in question on administrative leave, there is speculation circulating without much resolution.
Armacost says it is unclear if the officers were wearing body cameras at the time of the encounter.
“Our body camera program is just a few weeks old,” she said. “We are looking to see whether any officers involved in this case was wearing a camera, but only a few officers are wearing them at this point.”
During the encounter, the unidentified male tried to escape the apartment with a one-year-old child, but was arrested and taken into custody. In a video of the press conference, neither Armacost nor Baltimore County Police Chief James Johnson could account for the relationship of either of the children to the man, the location of the one-year-old child or what will happen to the children now.
Reportedly, all of Gaines’ social media accounts have been mysteriously deleted, including footage she allegedly uploaded during the standoff.
Watch the full press conference below as well as her last Instagram video post with her son: