An officer wearing a bulletproof vest and a suspect were shot outside the Bellagio after an armed robbery inside the Strip hotel Friday night, Las Vegas police said.
The shooting happened just after 9:45 p.m. Friday following the robbery at a “popular poker cage area,” said Metropolitan Police Department Capt. Nichole Splinter.
The armed suspect approached the cage and demanded money. He then fled through the hotel’s north doors and tried to carjack a vehicle from someone who had just pulled into the valet area.
It was unknown Saturday morning how much money the suspect took from the casino.
As he was pursued by four Metro officers, the man turned and fired at least one bullet, striking a Metro officer in the chest, Splinter said. Another officer shot at the suspect, striking him.
The officer who was shot and the suspect were both taken to University Medical Center, she said.
“The officer had his bulletproof vest on, which probably saved his life,” she said, later adding that “it looks like the bullet hit the front of his chest and possibly went across.”
The officer was treated and released from the hospital, but the suspect remained in critical condition, Splinter said during a briefing early Saturday morning .
Police continue to interview witnesses at the scene, Splinter said, acknowledging that many people saw the incident unfold.
“It was a packed casino on a Friday night,” she said.
Friday night marked the fourth police shooting involving Metro officers this year, according to Review-Journal records.
The names of the officers involved in the shooting will be released after 48 hours, and more information will be released in a press conference after 72 hours, according to Metro policy.