IMAGE: CRIME SCENE
Mel Evans  /  AP
Police secure the site of a shooting Monday in Camden, N.J.
updated 3/17/2008 6:15:19 PM ET 2008-03-17T22:15:19

A naked stabbing suspect got into a struggle with a female police officer Monday, leading a second officer to open fire and kill the suspect. The female officer was shot and seriously wounded.

Authorities were investigating whether she was shot by the other officer, or by the suspect, who may have grabbed her gun.

Police were called to South Camden neighborhood after reports that a man had stabbed someone. The suspect was identified as Lamont Morton, 19.

When police arrived, they found Morton naked, knocking on the door of a house in the neighborhood, said Camden County Prosecutor's Office spokesman Jason Laughlin.

Morton and the female officer got into a physical altercation, and then the second officer on the scene shot Morton several times, killing him, Laughlin said.

"There was a struggle that involved a gun," he said.

Laughlin said it is not known whether the female officer, a 15-year veteran of the force whose name is not being released, was shot by her fellow officer in a friendly fire incident or whether Morton managed to obtain her gun and shoot her.

The officer was taken to Cooper University Hospital with several wounds and was listed in serious condition, Laughlin said.

Brigette Edwards said she was driving her 11-year-old daughter and a friend to school when she saw the naked man on top of the police officer, pinning her to the street.

Then, she said, another officer fired his gun about a half-dozen times. Edwards said the officer did not give a warning.

Edwards said she didn't understand why police had to shoot Morton — especially so many times.

"My heart is just bleeding," she said as she watched crime scene investigators work. "I hope my daughter can sleep properly tonight."

Edwards said she knows Morton's aunt, in whose home the initial stabbing occurred. Neither she nor Laughlin, though, knew where Morton had been living.

The stabbing victim was at the same hospital as the officer, Laughlin said, and was expected to survive.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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