Police reported on Saturday that a man believed to have been driving under the influence of alcohol died following an officer-involved shooting in North Phoenix.
The events leading to the confrontation began when police received a call about a suspected drunk driver in the area of Central Avenue and Bell Road at around 2:30 p.m.
The caller informed dispatchers that they had seen the driver drinking from a bottle of alcohol and driving recklessly, swerving and nearly striking pedestrians. The caller remained on the phone with the dispatchers as the driver was followed to an apartment complex near 12th Street and Bell Road, where officers found the truck and its driver.
Phoenix Police Sergeant Brian Bower issued a statement, urging members of the public to alert the police in the event they witness any vehicles being driven by potentially intoxicated drivers.
Upon reaching the truck, officers noticed a rifle in the front and asked the driver to get out of the vehicle. Upon further investigation, the officers observed signs of possible intoxication and began a DUI investigation.
During the investigation, one of the officers discovered a handgun in the driver’s side door pocket. According to the police, the man tried to access the gun when a struggle broke out between him and the officers, leading to one officer opening fire.
The suspect was transported to the hospital but later died from the gunshot wounds. The police have not yet released the identity of the suspect.
The area around Central Avenue and Bell Road will remain closed as the police continue their investigation. The officers involved in the shooting will undergo both criminal and administrative investigations as is standard protocol.