Phoenix Police to use wounded officer’s handcuffs on shooting suspect

Apr 18, 2022, 9:43 AM | Updated: 2:22 pm
Nicholas Cowan (Phoenix Police Department and Pexels Photos)...
Nicholas Cowan (Phoenix Police Department and Pexels Photos)
(Phoenix Police Department and Pexels Photos)

PHOENIX — When police take Nicholas Cowan from a hospital room to a jail cell, the hospitalized Phoenix officer he’s accused of shooting will take part in the arrest — through her handcuffs.

Cowan, who was hit while exchanging gunfire with police outside a Phoenix gas station on Thursday, was captured Sunday after an hourslong standoff in Scottsdale, capping an intense manhunt that spanned across four days.

“He was transported to a local hospital, and once they release him we are going to book him and we’re going to use the officer who was shot — her cuffs to take him into custody,” Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s The Mike Broomhead Show on Monday.

Williams said the wounded officer, a 24-year veteran whose husband is also on the force, is still recovering in the hospital and is in “great spirits.”

The officer was able to listen to the police radio feed from Sunday’s standoff at a rental property near 66th Street and Osborn Road, which ended at about 7:45 p.m., Williams said.

Cowan, 35, will be booked into jail after he’s released from the hospital. One alleged accomplice, 34-year-old Nicole Montalbano, has been arrested for allegedly helping him after Thursday morning’s shooting at Cave Creek and Beardsley roads, and police are looking for others who may have been involved.

The shooting occurred after officers responded to a domestic violence call from Cowan’s girlfriend, who feared a confrontation with him.

“It’s still an active and ongoing investigation,” Williams said. “We’re going to continue through the process because we do know that Cowan had assistance and help.

“And at the end of the day, if you’re a victim of a crime, whether you’re a blue uniform or community member, we want to make sure that we really tie this up in a bow and make the case.”

Williams said the idea for using the wounded officer’s handcuffs on the suspect originated after one of her officers was seriously injured in a shooting in December.

“Our team and our folks thought about that when Tyler Moldovan was shot and we made a secondary arrest. We used his handcuffs to handcuff that individual,” she said.

“It’s just kind of showing our respect and showing the person who was the victim that this is your arrest.”

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Phoenix Police to use wounded officer’s handcuffs on shooting suspect