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April 10, 2016

Philly officer who was ambushed to toss Phillies' first pitch

Jesse Hartnett scheduled for Opening Day ceremonies

Police Sports
010915_HartnettGoFundMe Contributed Art/GoFundMe

Philadelphia Police Officer Jesse Hartnett.

A Philadelphia police officer who was ambushed in his cruiser by a gunman will be honored in front of thousands of baseball fans Monday.

Jesse Hartnett, who was shot several times by an assailant approaching his vehicle at 60th and Spruce Streets in January, will throw out the first pitch before the Phillies' home opener against the San Diego Padres. The team announced the news Friday. 

Hartnett, 33, was released from the hospital later in January to go continue his recovery at home. A four-year veteran of the Philadelphia Police Department, Hartnett has had to undergo several surgeries to repair his elbow and perform extensive rehab, according to a GoFundMe campaign set up by a family close to Hartnett.

Hartnett appeared in court in March to testify during a preliminary hearing for Edward Archer, his alleged attacker.

Archer, 30, of Yeadon, Delaware County, fired more than a dozen shots at Hartnett at close range, striking him three times in the arm, police said. He told police he performed the attack in the name of Islam, according to authorities. 

Archer is scheduled for a pre-trial conference on April 21, court records show.

Monday's game is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. at Citizens Bank Park. Some tickets are still available on the team's website, but plenty of cheaper seats are available on online markets like StubHub.