Panhandler hits officer with pipe and gets shot

SEATTLE -- An aggressive panhandler attacked a Tacoma Police Officer with a metal pipe after she walked up to him Saturday afternoon, said Tacoma Police spokeswoman Loretta Cool.

The officer saw the man near East 28th Street and Portland Avenue around 2:45 p.m.

He moved toward the officer with the pipe and she tased him, but he was unfazed and walked away, said Cool.

The panhandler crossed the Northbound I-5 off ramp to Portland Avenue and the officer followed.

He charged at the officer again, hitting her with the metal pipe.

She called for assistance and fired upon the suspect, said Cool.

The suspect is in critical condition at a Tacoma area hospital.

The officer has minor injuries and will be o.k.