Deal reached: Najee Harmon pleads guilty in shooting of Wauwatosa detective

MILWAUKEE COUNTY -- Najee Harmon has pleaded guilty to charges filed against him in connection with an officer-involved shooting that left a detective with the Wauwatosa Police Department injured. The shooting happened on June 19th, 2015 near 60th and Good Hope Road.

Najee Harmon

The plea deal came on Monday, February 8th -- the same day Harmon's jury trial was scheduled to begin.

Harmon instead pleaded guilty to four modified charges:

    Harmon is accused of shooting Wauwatosa Detective Jeffrey Griffin who was in the area near 60th and Good Hope Road on June 19th investigating a burglary.

    According to the criminal complaint filed against Harmon, officers, including Detective Griffin were investigating a recent burglary that occurred in Wauwatosa.

    60th and Good Hope officer-involved shooting (Wauwatosa detective shot)

    “The officers observed one of the reported stolen vehicles…parked and unoccupied. As the officers observed the vehicle, a male identified as (Harmon) exited a nearby apartment building and entered the driver’s seat of the vehicle.”

    Jeffrey Griffin

    The complaint indicates the officers approached the vehicle “effectively blocking it from moving, drew their weapons and ordered the defendant to stop and surrender.”

    The complaint indicates Harmon “failed to comply with the officers’ repeated commands and began running from the scene. As he did so, he drew a black handgun and pointed it toward the officers. The defendant fired several shots toward the officers.” The gunfire struck Detective Griffin. The injuries resulted in “significant internal injuries.”

    Griffin was released from the hospital on July 1st.

    Following this officer-involved shooting -- there was a massive manhunt for Harmon.

    Search for suspect in officer-involved shooting near 60th and Good Hope

    In their search for Harmon, police on the night of the shooting were led to the area of 12th and Keefe, where they were focused on a home.

    Search for Najee Harmon (12th and Keefe)

    Officers tried for several hours to make contact with Harmon and anyone else who may have been inside the home. Tactical units eventually went inside after gas was deployed, but police did not locate Harmon.

    Harmon was taken into custody on June 20th -- in the 2500 block of N. 21st Street (near 21st and Wright).

    Najee Harmon arrested (N. 21st Street)

    "Officers from the Milwaukee Police Department Fugitive Apprehension Unit searched the home. A Milwaukee K-9 found Harmon hiding in the basement," Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn said after Harmon was taken into custody.

    He was arrested without incident.

    Harmon will be sentenced in this case on March 18th.

    Harmon in October 2015 pleaded guilty to one count of armed robbery as party to a crime in connection with a June 16th armed robbery that happened near 56th and Fond du Lac.

    21-year-old Simione Parks was also charged with one count of armed robbery as party to a crime in connection with this crime. Parks was found guilty by a jury during trial, and ordered to serve three years in prison and six years extended supervision on December 21st, 2015.

    A criminal complaint indicates police were called out to the area near 56th and Fond du Lac on June 16th. There, they spoke with a woman who indicated she went with her brother to a check cashing store to cash a check. As she waited in the vehicle while her brother went inside the business, she said she noticed two young black males exit a vehicle parked next to hers and enter the check cashing business. After the men exited the business, the woman told police one of the men (Najee Harmon) entered her vehicle via the rear passenger door and put a gun to her neck -- demanding the car keys and threatening to shoot her.

    The woman told police when she told Harmon she didn't have the keys, he said: "I want all the money or I'm going to shoot you."

    The complaint indicates she gave Harmon her wallet and he then exited her vehicle.

    Police reviewed surveillance video -- which showed the two men exiting their vehicle and then entering the check cashing store. The complaint indicates Parks could be seen in the video conducting a transaction inside the store, and Harmon could be seen hanging around the store while Parks conducted his transaction.

    Najee Harmon

    The surveillance video then showed the two leaving the store, and entering their car.

    After a short time, the video shows Harmon exiting his vehicle, and entering the woman's vehicle parked next to him.

    The complaint indicates while Harmon was inside the woman's vehicle, the video showed Parks backing up his vehicle and stopping behind the woman's vehicle -- opening the rear driver's side passenger door. A short time later, Harmon was seen exiting the woman's vehicle and running to the waiting car.

    Harmon could be seen in the video holding what appeared to be a gun, police say.

    Najee Harmon

    The vehicle is then seen fleeing the scene.

    A manager at the check cashing store was able to identify Parks for police via his state ID.

    The woman in the vehicle parked next to the vehicle Parks and Harmon were in when they showed up to the check cashing store was able to identify Harmon for police via a photo array.

    Harmon will be sentenced in that case on March 11th.