2022 | Courts

Man accused of firing at county police, leading officers on chase ordered held without bond

Alleged shooter crashed in Fairfax, Va., police said

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A Germantown man accused of shooting at a Montgomery County police vehicle along with other vehicles and leading officers on a pursuit into Virginia was ordered to be held without bond during a court hearing Wednesday.

At around 9:20 a.m. July 4, police responded to a call about a man shooting a rifle into the air on Hawks Ridge Terrace in Germantown.

The man, later identified as 26-year-old Frederick Njihia, allegedly fired nine shots that struck a vehicle of a WSSC employee, who was in the area performing maintenance, according to charging documents.

Njihia allegedly left the scene in a blue Honda Civic. He still had the gun, according to charging documents.

Two county police officers in a cruiser saw Njihia in the Honda Civic at the intersection of Germantown and Frederick roads. Njihia allegedly fired a shot at the police cruiser, striking and deflating the left front tire, court documents say. The two officers in the vehicle allegedly saw Njihia aiming the rifle at them before he drove away.

The officers stopped at a nearby gas station to change the patrol car’s tire.

As Njihia headed south on Interstate 270 and toward Virginia, police pursued and notified Virginia State Police, according to police. Montgomery County police said Virginia police conducted a “pursuit intervention technique,” using another vehicle to halt the suspect’s car.

Njihia was injured in an ensuing crash, then arrested and taken to a hospital, according to Montgomery County police, who said Virginia police found two rifles in his vehicle.

A police investigation later found that a bullet Njihia allegedly fired on Hawks Ridge Terrace had gone through a home’s wall and into the kitchen. Four people were in the home when the shot was fired, according to charging documents. Nobody was injured.

In total, Njihia was charged with seven counts of attempted first-degree murder, seven counts of first-degree assault, seven counts of reckless endangerment and two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a violent crime. The charges are split between two cases, according to online court records.

During a hearing in Montgomery County Circuit Court on Wednesday, a judge ordered Njihia to be held without bond, according to online court records. His next hearing is scheduled for early August.

Attorney information for Njihia was not listed in court documents as of Thursday afternoon.

Caitlynn Peetz can be reached at caitlynn.peetz@bethesdamagazine.com