Police: Student officers shot had air pellet gun

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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WAND) - Police say a U of I student they shot pointed an air pellet gun at them. 

Officers say Samuel Applebaum, 23, pointed the weapon at officers in the area of John and Locust streets in Champaign. Officers say Champaign County Deputy Cory Christensen joined U of I officers Chuck Hoskins and A.J. Martin in the response. 

Police say all three fired at Applebaum when he refused to drop the Beretta air pellet gun, which they say looked like a semiautomatic handgun, striking him in the leg. 

"This gun had no features that would indicate it was not a real gun unless closely inspected," U of I police said in a press release. 

The suspect went to Carle Foundation Hospital for leg wound treatment, where he still is on Friday afternoon. 

U of I Police Chief Craig Stone and Champaign County Sheriff Dan Walsh say they believe the officers on scene acted correctly and within their training. All of them are on administrative leave, which police say is the standard after an officer-involved shooting. 

Illinois State Police investigators are working on the case at this time. 

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