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New Orleans, LA -- Earlier this month, news reports across the country ran with headlines about a police officer being shot in New Orleans, LA during an apparent struggle in front of a gas station. That suspect in the shooting, 18-year-old Michael Baker was promptly arrested at the scene and charged with attempted murder of a police officer. The case was open and shut and police had their man -- that is until they reviewed the surveillance footage and found that Baker didn't pull the trigger -- the cop did.

The incident unfolded on April 11 when an NOPD officer responded to a report of a "suspicious person" at a gas station. When the officer arrived, he approached Baker, who he said fit the description of the suspicious person.

When the officer attempted to frisk Baker, he tried to get away and a struggle ensued. During that struggle, the officer grabbed a gun which was allegedly in Bakers pants and the officer, not Baker, pulled the trigger, shooting himself in the leg.

As Baker was arrested, the officer apparently never found it necessary to mention that fact, so Baker was wrongly charged with the attempted murder of a law enforcement officer.

Luckily for Baker, his public defender had authorities review the surveillance footage from that night and it backed up his client's story.

Once the video was slowed down enough to see what actually happened, police determined that Baker did not try to kill the officer. They were then forced to drop the charges.

As reports:

NOPD said Friday the department asked the Orleans Parish District Attorney to drop a charge of attempted first-degree murder of a police officer against Baker after reviewing enhanced video of the encounter between Baker and the officer.

The DA’s office dropped the charge Friday, and Baker now faces a less serious charge of illegal carrying of a firearm, NOPD said in the statement. Jail records, however, show Baker remained incarcerated at the Orleans Justice Center jail as of about 5 p.m. Friday on the charge attempted first-degree murder of a policeman and its associated $750,000 bond.

Baker’s hand was “not on the weapon when it discharged,” NOPD spokesman Aaron Looney said in a statement on Friday.

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“The footage was enhanced and slowed to show that when the officer put his hand on the weapon – which was concealed in Baker’s waistband – it discharges, striking the officer in the leg.”

As the Free Thought Project has previously reported, police officers shooting themselves and blaming others is not so rare. In fact, as we reported at the end of 2015, five cops in only a three-month period, in different departments across the country, all faked being shot and then blamed the shootings on non-existent assailants.

The officers' false stories were then picked up in the media, or by their own departments, and used to push the idea that cops in America are under attack. Not only were these stories used to propagandize consumers of mainstream media, but massive manhunts ensued and innocent people locked down as state resources were tyrannically squandered on a wild goose chase.

One officer, in particular, Lt. Joe Gliniewicz, went to the ultimate length to make his fake shooting look like a war on cops when he actually killed himself in September 2015. An entire town was subsequently placed on lockdown and residents were subject to a brief period of martial law as Gliniewicz's brothers in blue searched for three non-existent suspects. Gliniewicz was a criminal cop who was using the war on cops as a means of covering up his nefarious history.

Only after he was publicly outed as a criminal cop did any of Gliniewicz's fellow officers refer to him as something other than a 'hero.'

A month later, England Police Department Sgt. David Houser faked being shot during a traffic stop in Arkansas. Another statewide manhunt was launched for a non-existent "Hispanic man." Two weeks later, Houser caved to pressure and confessed to shooting himself.

Before that, it was reported that veteran police officer Terry Smith was shot in the back by an unknown assailant, and Black Lives Matter protesters were implicated. However, the Houston Police Department found that it was actually his partner, Gregory Hudson who shot Smith.

In September 2015, Officer Bryan Johnson crashed his police cruiser into a tree. To cover up his terrible driving, Johnson then fired several shots into his wrecked car and then radioed into the station, claiming he'd been a victim of the war on cops.  Yet another massive manhunt was launched in search of a fake shooter.

Commerce City Police Officer Kevin Lord was also arrested in 2015 after it was revealed he faked being shot at during a traffic stop. Lord claimed he was shot at close range while making a traffic stop in the 9700 block of Peoria Street. His bullet-proof vest was credited with saving his life.