BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - It started with a routine traffic stop but police say it ended in tragedy for the driver and a pedestrian.
Sources close to the investigation tell News 4 that Buffalo Police Housing officers believed they were in a life and death situation. Sources say as one officer was being dragged by a driver who had been stopped, the other officer shot into the car at close range.
Buffalo Police stopped 48-year-old Issac Parker Thursday night on a routine traffic infraction. They believe he had been drinking and had him shut off the car engine. That's when they say he became confrontational.
Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda said, "We believe that a struggle ensued after he tried to start the vehicle, and at some point, one of the officers was dragged, and the shot was fired at close proximity."
Parker, who authorities say had at least two prior DWI convictions, drove north on Fillmore Avenue at a high rate of speed and crashed into three light poles. News 4 has learned Parker was struck by the gunshot and died from that wound.
One of the light poles landed on 54-year-old Ida Murphy, who had just left Pikes Peak Market and was walking home. She was also killed.
Murphy was a cherished member of the community who helped run the food pantry at the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church on Fillmore. A makeshift memorial has already been set up here at the accident scene.
News of her death Thursday night shocked her friends and family members. Fredean Anderson Honeycutt was overcome with grief.
"It was just very emotional for me because she was extremely good to my grandchildren, she was extremely good to the people in the community. She loved Antioch Baptist Church," Honeycutt said.
Murphy leaves behind three children and four grandchildren. Relatives and friends at the accident scene said prayers for her.
There will be a prayer vigil this Sunday night at 6 p.m. at the corner of Fillmore and Riley, the scene of the crash.
The two Buffalo Police Housing officers have been placed on administrative leave. An internal Buffalo Police investigation has been launched, which is standard any time an officer fires a weapon while on duty.
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