Suspect shoots at police after chase, crash; officers return fire

'He stuck his hand out the door, with the gun in it, and started shooting,’ eyewitness recounts

Maricopa officers work the scene of Sunday's crash at Maricopa Casa Grande Highway and Porter Road following a police pursuit and officer-involved shooting. The road was closed. [Brian Petersheim Jr.]

The Pinal County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a police-involved shooting on Sunday evening at a busy Maricopa intersection. 

According to Maricopa police, a gunfight erupted at Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway and North Porter Road, near Walmart. 

John Potter of Maricopa witnessed the scene about 6 p.m. 

He and his son were in their vehicle sitting at the traffic light waiting for a train to pass, when he heard sirens and saw a car “coming up pretty fast” south on Porter, he told InMaricopa. “I saw him coming and he just didn’t stop … The cops were right behind him.” 

The suspect’s vehicle struck a white SUV traveling west on MCG Highway in the intersection, Potter said. 

“He stuck his hand out the door, with the gun in it, and started shooting,” Potter said of the suspect. Potter said he told his son to get down on the floorboard of the car. 

Police returned fire. 

Potter said he remained at the intersection until the gunfire ended, when he saw the suspect crawl out of the passenger side of the vehicle and lay down on the ground. 

“I think he had been hit a few times,” Potter said. 

According to police, the suspect was injured in the incident and taken to a hospital for treatment. He was not identified by authorities and no condition was provided. 

No officers were injured during the incident. 

Police have Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway closed between Stonegate Road and White and Parker Road as the investigation continues.

Police told ABC15 in Phoenix that two people were injured in the incident, and that the officer-involved shooting was preceded by an earlier service call. 

At least one other innocent bystander was injured and hospitalized after the initial crash, ABC15 reported. 

The news station also reported it counted more than 27 bullet holes in the windshield, driver’s side window and body of the suspect’s car. 

None of those details were included in a press release issued to InMaricopa on Sunday night by the Maricopa police public information officer, but the earlier service call was apparently a reported stabbing in Homestead, according to a resident of Sanders Way, who posted a comment on the MPD’s Facebook post. 

Read more details here.