Fake gun leads to real trouble in Paterson

PATERSON - An off-duty police officer shot a robbery suspect who flashed a fake gun tonight, according to the Passaic County Prosecutor's Office.

Officials say the officer observed the robbery in Paterson outside of a barber shop and intervened. They say the suspect, 21-year-old Jermaine Eason, pulled a weapon from his waistband, causing the cop to fire four shots, striking Eason twice.

Authorities confirmed that Eason had a pellet gun. He was taken to St. Joseph's Healthcare System in Paterson and treated for non-life threatening bullet wounds to his arm and shoulder. Paterson police say the officer did not appear to be injured, but was taken to the hospital for evaluation.

Authorities have not named the officer involved in the shooting, but have told News 12 New Jersey that he is one of 125 employees on the department's lay off list.

Eason has been arrested and charged with weapons offenses.

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