Slain Detroit Police Officer 'a natural leader'; gunman wanted 'suicide by cop'

Slain Detroit Police Officer Rasheen McClain was a hero as the chief and Mayor have said. 

The chief watched the body cam video of McClain going in. He was the experienced officer taking the lead in what was undoubtedly a very dangerous situation.

When Officer Rasheen McClain and Officer Phillippe Batoum-Bisse got to the scene on Wyoming near Chippewa, they were told there was a suspect inside armed with a long rifle or a gun.

McClain, the 16-year veteran, called for backup and he took charge.

"That's when quickly Officer McClain began to develop a plan. Once the additional officers arrived, they began to clear the location and try to locate this very dangerous suspect."

Police chief James Craig and Mayor Mike Duggan described Rasheen McClain as a hero.
"Rasheen McClain by all accounts was an officer that everyone looked up to, was a natural leader in every situation," Duggan said. "First one in the door, first one down the stairs to confront an armed suspect. His courage resulted in tragedy."

With backup and in darkness, the officers methodically searched the house cleared the upper and main level.

Then they went downstairs into the basement and Craig could see what happened next on McClain's body camera.

"As they got halfway down the staircase in a very closed environment, the suspect came out from the left, he fired quickly twice striking both officers. Both officers went down," said Craig.

McClain had been hit in the neck and Batoum-Bisse also hit, in the ankle. At some point the two rear officers backed out to get a tactical advantage. The suspect knew what he was doing.
"It was clear he had some type of tactical training," Craig said. "Once the officers went down, he ran past the two officers going up the stairs leaving the residence."

The chief saying, he believes the 28-year-old suspect wanted to die at the hands of police.

"What was clear, he wanted suicide by cop," Craig said.

When he came out with his rifle the officers outside fired at the suspect. One round hit the suspect in the arm. Even though he was wounded he ran down the block into a backyard. But police quickly got him.

The entire city is now focused on the men who faced a threatening situation to protect and serve which is in their duty.

"Officer Philippe Batoum-Bissi, I had a chance to spend time with him in the hospital, and he also behaved heroically," Duggan said. "his mother told me that his length of service may not be long in Detroit police but had years in the National Guard, he has service in his DNA. He was in a lot of pain but was very courageous."

Batoum-Bissi has two and a half years on the force and was in temporary serious condition at Sinai Grace. His training was being enhanced by the veteran McClain.

"He was very capable, at times I saw him on traffic stops by himself," Craig said. "I would drive up to support him. And other times I saw him on calls. He was a very productive officer in trying to keep 12th Precinct safe."

McClain was married to his wife Heidi for 10 years and had 2 step children

Chief said 350 officers converged on the hospital. So many had to look in their eyes and tell them the sad news in two groups. There was concern over possible paralysis Batoum-Bisse, but the chief says he's expected to recover.