BALTIMORE (AP) — Police have identified a man they say was fatally shot by an off-duty Baltimore police officer during an attempted robbery.
Police Spokesman T.J. Smith identified the man Saturday as 44-year-old Robert Jerome Howard.
Smith said Howard was holding a gun and a knife when approached by the officer, who was in the store Friday to make a purchase.
The officer, who was in plain clothes, shot the man several times. Smith said the man was "no stranger to the criminal justice system."
Police Commissioner Ken Davis called the officer "an absolute hero." He said he laments the loss of life, but believes the officer acted "appropriately and courageously."
Police say they won't identify the officer because he's undercover. Smith said both Howard and the officer are black.