Park ranger recovers after being shot in north Charlotte, CMPD says

CHARLOTTE — A park ranger is expected to recover after he was shot near the entrance of a north Charlotte park on Sunday night, police said.

Maj. Brian Foley told Channel 9 that around 7:30 p.m., officers found a county employee who had been shot at the Charlotte Friendship Sportsplex, a county park facility on Cindy Lane.

The park ranger had been shot in one of his extremities, Foley confirmed. He said officers at the scene were able to render aid to him until paramedics arrived.

MEDIC said they took him to the hospital where he was in stable condition. He’s expected to recover from his injuries.

The park ranger was locking up for the night when he was shot.

Right now, police are relying on information from the park ranger to piece together a good suspect description.

“Certainly this is a concerning incident, we want to make sure all parks and recreation facilities are safe for everyone to use,” Foley said.

“It’s heartbreaking and I’m just so glad he’s OK,” said County Commissioner Elaine Powell.

The Parks and Recreation Department has 53 unarmed park rangers countywide, who are asked to do a lot.

“They have to deal with all kinds of stressful situations where they don’t have any law enforcement authority,” Powell said.

That is why she said the county will soon spend and $250,000 to increase security at parks.

“We want our parks to be safe and we’re committed to that,” Powell said.

The park was closed Monday.

The motive behind the shooting has not been released.

The shooting on Sunday was the second shooting this month at a park in that area. Less than two weeks ago, a 17-year-old was shot and killed at Fred Alexander Park -- about half a mile from the Friendship Sportsplex.

This is a developing story. Check back at wsoctv.com for updates.

(WATCH BELOW: CMPD investigating homicide in west Charlotte)