Bank robbery suspect shot, killed by officer

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by azfamily.com

Video report by Casey James

Posted on December 28, 2013 at 5:41 PM

Updated Tuesday, Dec 31 at 3:53 PM

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PHOENIX -- Authorities said the suspect in a Saturday morning bank robbery was shot and killed by a Phoenix Police detective.

About 10 a.m., the Phoenix Police Department was called to Compass Bank near 35th Avenue and Thomas Road for an unknown trouble.

A person in a fast food drive-thru across the street reported seeing someone pull up to the bank in a white car and run inside wearing a mask. The witness indicated he thought the bank was being robbed, police said.

An officer arrived at the scene and saw a white, four-door Ford parked at an angle in front of the building. Police said it was a rental car and the license plate was covered.

The officer then reportedly saw someone exit the bank carrying a bag and handgun.

Police said the officer drew his service weapon and began giving the suspect commands. The suspect allegedly raised his weapon and began firing at the officer, who tried to take cover.

A Phoenix Police detective in the area heard the radio call and went to the bank to see if he could help.

When the detective arrived, he reportedly saw the suspect shoot at the officer.

The detective drew his service weapon and fired at the suspect, striking him in the chest.

Phoenix Fire paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.

The man allegedly pulled his handgun on three bank employees and one customer, demanding they lie on the ground.

He allegedly forced a bank manager and two tellers to open the vault and filled a bag with cash.

"As soon as the suspect turned his attention back to the employees, that (customer) got up and just ran out the door," Officer James Holmes said.

Bank employees said the man saw the officer arrive at the bank, but he went out to his car anyway.

The bank was evacuated while officers searched the building. No other suspects were found.

Police said their investigation indicates the man acted alone.

The officers and bank employees were not injured, police said.

The suspect had not been identified Saturday afternoon, but police said he appeared to be between 25 and 30 years old.

Both officers will be placed on administrative leave for 72 hours, which is standard procedure.

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