PHILADELPHIA – Two police officers were shot on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia Monday night, officials confirmed during a news conference just after 12:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said the shooting happened shortly after 9:47 p.m. in the 2500 block of Spring Garden Street. 

A highway patrol officer, 36, suffered a graze wound to his forehead, while a sheriff deputy, 44, assigned to the Montgomery Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad Task Force, was inflicted with a graze wound to the shoulder. The officers have 14 years and 16 years of service, respectively.

Both have been treated and released from the hospital, Outlaw said. 

They had been working security detail on the Parkway just before the fireworks began. The officers did not hear any shots or any rounds being fired, Outlaw said.

No arrests have been made in the shooting, and there were no suspects in custody.

Outlaw said it is too early to determine the source of the gunfire.

"We don't know. At this point it's still too early to tell," she said. "We don't know if this was ricochet from celebratory gunfire, we don't know if this was intentional, we don't know if this was someone taking a shot intentionally at these officers from long range."

Outlaw confirmed she saw a photo of the bullet that grazed the highway patrol officer's head, on his hat.

"It is miraculous...the fact that the round stopped in his hat," she said about the close call.

Outlaw said she was grateful for the city's emergency and security personnel who got people out of the area when the shooting happened.

"What could have been a chaotic scene or a catastrophic scene wasn't today, so I'm grateful for that," she said.

The shooting of the Philadelphia police officers came hours after a gunman opened fire on an Independence Day parade in Chicago, killing at least 6 people.

Outlaw said Philadelphia has its own share of gun violence, but it's still a "slap in the face" when officers who are charged with protecting and serving those who come to the city to celebrate safely are attacked. 

The police commissioner said that despite the potential dangers of what they do, the city's officers are committed to doing their jobs and looking for whomever is responsible for the shooting.

"We will continue to do what we do," she continued. "This is a call to serve."

Mayor Jim Kenney said the day went well otherwise, until the shooting.

"It was a laid back, chill day. The weather was beautiful. The concert was beautiful," he said, "but we live in America, and we have the Second Amendment."

"We have to come to grips with what this country is about right now," he continued. "We had a beautiful day out there today except for some nitwit."

"A lot of goofballs out there with guns, and they can get them anytime they want them," Kenney said. "So this is what we have to live with."

The mayor said that if he had the ability to "take care of guns," he would, but "the legislature won't let us, the U.S. Congress won't let us, the governor does the best that he can, our attorney general does the best that he can, but this is a gun country."

"Until Americans decide that they want to give up the guns and give up the opportunity to get guns, we're going to have this problem," he said.

Kenney said he does not enjoy holidays and special events held in the city because he's "waiting for something bad to happen all the time."

"I'll be happy when I'm not here...when I'm not mayor, and I can enjoy some stuff," he said.

As the shooting unfolded, the city's Office of Emergency Management said in a Twitter post around 10:04 p.m., "There is a security incident on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Please follow public safety instructions and avoid area. Details to follow."

The Philadelphia Police Department followed up with its own post around 10:43 p.m., directing those looking to reunite with loved ones to meet at 1901 Vine St., in front of the Free Library of Philadelphia. All other individuals, it reiterated, should avoid the area.

The police department later said the reunification center would close at 1 a.m. Tuesday.

Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call 215-686-TIPS (8477).

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