From the Harford County Sheriff’s Office:
Today, October 27, 2022, Deputies from the Harford County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) were involved in a shooting in the 1400 block of Shirley Drive in Bel Air.
At approx. 2:26 pm, this afternoon, Deputies were dispatched to a call for a subject experiencing a mental health crisis, erratic behavior, and delusions. Early information gathered on scene indicated the subject possessed multiple firearms.
Deputies responded and attempted to contact the subject, identified as William Lee Hawkins, age 41. A safe perimeter was established around the home and residents were evacuated while additional support from multiple teams were requested, including the HCSO Special Response Team (SRT), Crisis Negotiations Team (CNT), and the Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Unit. Prior to their arrival, Deputies already on scene heard gunshots being fired inside the residence. Once CNT Negotiators arrived, they immediately began working with mental health professionals and family members in an attempt to bring the barricade to a peaceful resolution. Phone contact was made with Hawkins by the CNT and conversations continued for nearly an hour.
At approximately, 4:33 pm, Hawkins exited his residence armed with a handgun. As he advanced on deputies, refused to comply with commands, and surrender, deputies fearing for their safety and the safety of others fired at Hawkins.
Deputies along with Emergency Medical Services, which were staged nearby, instantly began to render aid and secure the scene. Hawkins was airlifted to R. Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center. Hawkins was alert, conscious, and speaking to first responders at the time of transport. At this time, he is in stable but serious condition.
No Deputies were injured and there is no additional threat to community safety at the time of this report. The investigation was assumed by Detectives from the HCSO Criminal Investigations Division (CID). Investigators from the Forensic Services Unit (FSU) responded to the scene to collect and preserve physical evidence in support of the investigation. Two Deputies have been placed on routine administrative leave. Hawkins is facing charges from multiple firearms violations and reckless endangerment.
Detectives from CID are continuing the investigation. Additionally, in accordance with Maryland law and HCSO policy, MD Attorney General’s Independent Investigations Division (IID) was contacted and responded. At present, IID investigators determined that no investigation will be conducted by their unit. If anyone has additional information, video, or witnessed the incident, please call Detective A. Ross at (443) 567-7091.
The Harford County Sheriff’s Office is committed to a fair and transparent investigation and will continue to update citizens as the investigation unfolds and more information becomes available. We appreciate the community’s support and patience.