Man accused of shooting Phoenix officer taken into custody after 80-hour manhunt

Apr 17, 2022, 8:19 PM | Updated: Apr 18, 2022, 2:22 pm

PHOENIX — A man accused of shooting a Phoenix police officer on Thursday has been taken into custody after a manhunt that spanned around 80 hours, authorities said.

Nicholas Cody Cowan was taken into custody in Scottsdale near 66th Street and Osborn Road on Sunday evening after law enforcement received a tip about his location, Phoenix Police Sgt. Andy Williams said in a press conference.

A negotiation commenced for several hours with the man refusing to surrender before authorities entered the residence and took Cowan into custody without “a major use of force.”

Cowan was in the hospital receiving treatment for several apparent gunshot wounds that were likely from an exchange of gunfire with police during the incident on Thursday, authorities said.

“I am here to tell you the community can rest easy and breathe a sigh of relief because Nicholas Cody Cowan has been taken into custody for the attempted murder of a Phoenix police officer and a whole list of other crimes,” Chief Jeri Williams announced.

Cowan had last been seen near Third Avenue and Greenway Road, about 5 miles from where the shooting occurred outside a gas station.

After the shooting, Cowan abandoned his car and received assistance from multiple people during his time on the run, police said, including Nicole Montalbano, 34, who was believed to be a former romantic partner.

She was booked for hindering prosecution, among other charges, police said.

Police said it is believed Cowan received assistance from others and that search warrants were conducted on four locations throughout the Valley in the days before the arrest on Sunday.

“As we have just demonstrated, you can run but you can’t hide,” the chief said.

A Blue Alert was activated around 4 p.m. Thursday, triggering alarms on cellphones across the Valley. The Blue Alert is a rarely used system that DPS can use when a suspect who assaulted a law enforcement officer is on the loose. DPS deactivated the Blue Alert on Sunday evening after Cowan was taken into custody.

The wounded officer was taken to HonorHealth Deer Valley Medical Center with critical injuries. Police said Sunday the officer remains in intensive care in stable condition and was made aware of the arrest.

The officer, whose name has not been released, is a mother and a 24-year veteran whose husband is also on the force.

She was among the officers who responded to a gas station on a domestic violence call. The caller said she left her home and went to the gas station because she was afraid of a potential confrontation.

While officers were talking to the woman, authorities said Cowan allegedly drove into the parking lot and fired multiple rounds at officers at the gas station before driving away.

The woman told police that Cowan had committed several criminal acts, attempted suicide and made threats to shoot it out with police if they were called.

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Man accused of shooting Phoenix officer taken into custody after 80-hour manhunt