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Phoenix-area freeway shut down after shooting suspect takes own life

PHOENIX — A Phoenix area freeway was shut down during rush hour after a man took his own life after allegedly opening fire on two off-duty Casa Grande police officers on Wednesday.

The Loop 202 was shut down westbound at Dobson Road after police were searching for 37-year-old Juan Pablo Rodriguez-Fregoso, who allegedly shot a Casa Grande police officer and a police civilian employee around 10 a.m. on Wednesday.

According to a statement from the Casa Grande Police Department, Rodriguez-Fregoso was spotted on the Loop 202 westbound around 3 p.m. on Wednesday. Rodriguez-Fregoso stopped the car and shot himself as police officers approached his vehicle.

Thomas Anderson, a spokesman with the Casa Grande Police Department, confirmed that Rodriguez-Fregoso was dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound around 4:15 p.m.

The Loop 202 westbound at Dobson Road was closed around 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday. It reopened around 7 p.m., but the HOV and two left lanes remained blocked. The eastbound portion of the highway remained open.

Juan Pablo Rodriguez-Fregoso (Photo: Casa Grande PD)

Rodriguez-Fregoso was suspected of shooting Corporal Robert Price and civilian employee Yvette Rodriguez at about 10 a.m. along a roadway near a Casa Grande subdivision called Villago, Anderson said.

Price was found with multiple gunshot wounds to his torso and leg and Rodriguez was found with one gunshot wound to the upper back.

Both victims were flown to Phoenix-area hospitals and are in stable condition.

Anderson did not say what prompted the shooting, but police identified Rodriguez as the estranged wife of Rodriguez-Fregoso and The Casa Grande Dispatch reported that Rodriguez had filed for divorce from her husband on Tuesday.

Casa Grande was swarming with officers from local, state and federal law enforcement agencies searching for the suspect.

Four schools in Casa Grande were locked down after the shooting as a precaution. The lock down has since been lifted and all students are safe.

The Associated Press contributed to the report. 

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