Yuma Bor­der Patrol in­volved in shoot­ing

In­ci­dent near Quartzsite leaves sus­pect dead

Yuma Sun - - FRONT PAGE - BY JAMES GIL­BERT @YSJAMESGILBERT

Yuma Sec­tor Bor­der Patrol agents from the Blythe Sta­tion were in­volved in a shoot­ing early Wed­nes­day morn­ing in La Paz County, which left one sus­pect dead and an­other in cus­tody, ac­cord­ing to the Ari­zona De­part­ment of Pub­lic Safety.

The in­ci­dent be­gan at ap­prox­i­mately 12:56 a.m., when a state trooper con­ducted a traf­fic stop on a blue Ford Mus­tang on In­ter­state 10 at mile­post 57, which is 40 miles east of Quartzsite.

While the trooper was ex­plain­ing to the driver that he had been pulled over for a sus­pended li­cense plate, the front seat pas­sen­ger also got out of the ve­hi­cle and opened fire on the trooper with a sub­ma­chine gun.

Af­ter fight­ing off the driver, the trooper was able to take cover and avoid be­ing hit by any bul­lets. He then re­turned fire, shoot­ing out the back win­dow of the Mus­tang. The pas­sen­ger got back in the car and fled from the scene, head­ing west on In­ter­state 10.

The trooper was then able to take the driver into cus­tody.

Agent Justin Kallinger of the Yuma Sec­tor Pub­lic

Af­fairs Of­fice said Bor­der Patrol agents and La Paz County deputies later spot­ted the Mus­tang at mile­post 17 and a pur­suit en­sued, which ended at Dome Rock Road. There was then an ex­change of gun­fire at this lo­ca­tion be­tween Bor­der Patrol agents, deputies and the sus­pect.

Af­ter­wards the sus­pect fled on foot across the high­way to the east­bound side, where he hi­jacked a big rig with an at­tached trailer. Ac­cord­ing to DPS the truck driver was sleep­ing in­side when the sus­pect as­saulted him and held him at gun­point. He then drove the semi truck east­bound on In­ter­state 10, back toward Quartzsite, where he got off the high­way and drove down Main Street be­fore even­tu­ally stop­ping at about 2:30 a.m. at a gas sta­tion in the 3100 block, where a fi­nal ex­change of gun­fire oc­curred.

The sus­pect was sub­se­quently shot by agents and sus­tained se­ri­ous in­juries. Troop­ers, deputies and agents im­me­di­ately be­gan ad­min­is­ter­ing ad­vanced life-sav­ing tech­niques on him.

The sus­pect was trans­ported by air am­bu­lance to an area hospi­tal but later suc­cumbed to his in­juries. The com­mer­cial truck driver sus­tained an in­jury but was not trans­ported for med­i­cal treat­ment. No of­fi­cers or troop­ers were se­ri­ously in­jured dur­ing the in­ci­dent.

The FBI, CBP’s Of­fice of Pro­fes­sional Re­spon­si­bil­ity, the De­part­ment of Pub­lic Safety and the La Paz County Sher­iff’s De­part­ment are in­volved in the on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion. West­bound I-10 was closed at mile­post 81 for the po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion but has since re­opened.

LOANED PHOTO/YUMA SEC­TOR BOR­DER PATROL

YUMA SEC­TOR BOR­DER PATROL agents from the Blythe Sta­tion were in­volved in a shoot­ing at about 2:30 a.m. Wed­nes­day morn­ing at a gas sta­tion in the 3100 block of Main Street in Quartzite, which left one sus­pect dead and an­other in cus­tody, ac­cord­ing to the Ari­zona De­part­ment of Pub­lic Safety.

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