LAS VEGAS (KXNT) – Las Vegas police are investigating the first officer-involved shooting of 2017 after a man was shot while attempting to rob a plainclothes Las Vegas police officer, according to authorities.

The incident happened near North Jones Boulevard and Carmen Boulevard around 9:40 p.m. Thursday, Las Vegas Metro Police Capt. John McGrath said.

Two plainclothes detectives were conducting surveillance in the area when one of the detectives could out of his vehicle and was approached by two black men.

McGrath said one of the suspects, Thomas Lamar Cotton, pulled a gun and tried to rob the detective. After identifying himself as police, McGrath said the detective pulled his weapon and shot the armed suspect.

Cotton was taken to University Medical Center, where he was taken into surgery. Court and jail records show he is expected to face an assault with a weapon charge once he’s released from a hospital where he underwent surgery late Thursday. The detective was not injured.

The second suspect fled the scene and was being sought by authorities, McGrath said.

Cotton, 48, has convictions in forgery, stolen vehicle and drug cases, records show. He has served several stints in Nevada state prison. Investigators recovered a black revolver at the scene.

The detective was placed on paid leave pending departmental and district attorney reviews.

Las Vegas police were involved in 10 shootings in 2016, including seven that left a person dead.


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