Suspect dead, Maricopa police officer hurt in overnight shooting
MARICOPA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - A suspect is dead, and a police officer is recovering after a shooting early Wednesday in the city of Maricopa. Around 1:30 a.m., someone called 911 to report that three people were breaking into cars in a neighborhood near Honeycutt Road & North Hartman Road. “That reporting party was following those individuals for a period of time until they were threatened with a firearm,” said Monica Williams with the city of Maricopa.
As officers arrived at the scene, they saw three people breaking into a car parked nearby. They then ran off. A teenage boy was quickly taken into custody while the two other suspects climbed over a wall and ran into nearby fields.
Officers chased the suspects, and that’s when police say one of the suspects opened fire, hitting one of the officers. The second officer returned fire, hitting one of the suspects. The officer who was shot was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and is reportedly in stable condition. The suspect died on the way to the hospital. The third suspect wasn’t injured and was arrested shortly after the shooting occurred.
Hunter Banks was in his home in the neighborhood when he was jolted awake. “I just heard three small cracks and it more or less sounded like firecrackers,” said Banks, who had his car broken into. “They came to my room about 2, yeah 2 in the morning, and they told me my car had been broken into and that somebody had smashed out the rear window,” Banks said. He quickly began inspecting the car with police, checking to see if anything was stolen.
“When I opened the driver door, I was able to see the ignition getting ripped out of it, indicating they tried to steal it, which is pretty insane,” Banks said. While he was looking, the situation quickly escalated. “Three shots rang out right behind me in the field. Cop down. They said cop down a few times. It was scary,” said Erika Ebling, Hunter’s aunt.
Since the shooting happened on Gila River reservation land, the FBI will be taking over the investigation into the officer-involved shooting.
This is the 45th officer-involved shooting in the state of Arizona.
This story is still developing. Stay tuned to Arizona’s Family for more details.
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