An off-duty State Police investigator shot and wounded a burglar early Sunday who broke into the officer’s unmarked vehicle in an Ascension Parish subdivision where he lives, the Sheriff’s Office said.

The investigator, who has not been identified, was alerted by a neighbor around 4:30 a.m. Sunday that a burglar was breaking into the officer’s State Police-issued, unmarked car parked in his driveway, Ascension Parish Sheriff Jeff Wiley said in a news release.

The investigator armed himself and went outside to confront the burglar, Wiley said.

By the time the investigator got outside, Wiley said, the burglar had already broken into the vehicle and had taken several “valuable items.” He did not identify the items.

After a brief chase, the two men got into a physical struggle, the sheriff said.

The burglar indicated that he had a handgun and was “prepared to use it,” Wiley said. When the burglar reached into his pants pocket, the investigator shot the man once in the abdomen, Wiley said.

An ambulance took the wounded man to a hospital where he’s being treated.

Sheriff’s deputies, who also were alerted to the break-in by the neighbor, determined the burglar had stolen items in his possession, Wiley said.

Deputies also recovered a handgun that is believed to belong to the burglar, the sheriff said.

Allison Hudson, spokeswoman for the Sheriff’s Office, said the burglar is in stable condition but declined on Sunday to identify him or the detective.

Maj. Doug Cain, a State Police spokesman, said the detective has been placed on paid administrative leave while the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office investigates the shooting.

Cain said State Police will release the investigator’s name in the coming days but declined to do so Sunday so that the detective could inform relatives and friends about his involvement in the shooting before he’s identified.

Anyone with information may contact the Sheriff’s Office at (225) 621-4636 or an anonymous tip line by texting 847411 or Crime Stoppers at (225) 344-7867.

Follow Bryn Stole on Twitter, @BrynStole.