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Off-duty Metro East police officer shot three people after fight, charges say

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ST. CLAIR COUNTY — A Metro East police officer is facing charges after being accused of shooting three people while off duty in Belleville.

Khalind Hayes, 27, of Fairview Heights, pleaded not guilty on Friday after being charged by the St. Clair County State’s Attorney’s Office with three counts of aggravated battery with a firearm. Each of the charges is a Class X felony with a minimum of six years of prison time.

Hayes, an officer with the Madison Police Department, is on unpaid administrative leave, said Madison police Chief Jeffrey Bridick. Hayes was sworn in as a patrolman in January 2021, records show.

On July 31, Hayes and another man got into a verbal argument that started at a local business and turned violent, said Belleville Police. A physical brawl broke out once the man and some of his associates confronted Hayes and others while the two groups were outside after the business closed.

Hayes then brandished a handgun after the fight was over and began shooting, police say.

Police came to the scene shortly before 2 a.m., finding a man shot in the buttocks and two women with graze wounds, one to the abdomen and one to the leg, police say. All three were hospitalized but later released.

Hayes turned himself in to authorities soon after the shootings, and police said they are not seeking any more suspects in the investigation.

Hayes has prior traffic violations but no criminal charges.

Hayes’ attorney did not immediately return a request for comment on Tuesday.

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