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Suspect in Cleveland police officer's fatal shooting arraigned, held on $5 million bond

Posted at 7:30 AM, Jul 05, 2024

CLEVELAND — De'Lawnte Hardy, the 24-year-old man accused of killing 27-year-old Cleveland Police Officer Jamieson Ritter early Thursday morning, was arraigned today on an aggravated murder charge.

He was given a $5 million bond and is scheduled for a pretrial hearing on July 17.

According to police, at around 1:30 a.m. on July Fourth, Ritter and other officers were near East 80th Street and Wade Park, looking for Hardy, who was wanted for felonious assault.

Ritter encountered Hardy exiting a home. Hardy tried to get away from police on a bike before he allegedly opened fire on officers, fatally striking Ritter.

Hardy was taken into custody a short time later.

In court Friday, prosecutors said police were looking for Hardy after he allegedly stole his grandmother's gun and shot her in the face at her Garfield Heights home last week.

The prosecutor said she is currently on life support at MetroHealth Medical Center.

Garfield Heights police records obtained by News 5 Investigators say Hardy was at his grandmother's Reindeer Ave. home on Friday, June 28th.

Her husband called police early Saturday morning after finding her "laying in a pool of blood."

"The uptick in gun violence involving young people, quite frankly, is alarming, exhausting and dismaying. The harm to the families, community and society at large is immeasurable." Judge Andrea Nelson Moore said during Hardy's arraignment.

A memorial now sits in front of the Third District Police Precinct in support of the fallen officer.

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