Arrest made in shooting that led to power outage in Phoenix nearly 3 months ago

Apr 24, 2024, 9:00 AM

File photo of Phoenix police SUVs parked in front of a metal utility pole. A suspect was arrested A...

A man was arrested after allegedly assaulting Phoenix police officers as they apprehended him. (KTAR News File Photo)

(KTAR News File Photo)

PHOENIX – A suspect was arrested Tuesday in connection with a fatal shooting that led to a power outage in east Phoenix nearly three months ago, authorities announced.

“After months of intense investigation into this homicide, detectives assigned to the case were able to identify the suspect as 34-year-old Joe Watson,” Sgt. Rob Scherer of the Phoenix Police Department said in a media advisory Wednesday.

Watson was booked into jail on counts of second-degree murder and prohibited weapon possession.

He is accused of killing 44-year-old Erik Lagunas on Feb. 5 in a shooting that wound up causing a power outage.

How did fatal Phoenix shooting cause power outage?

Officers initially responded to a call about shots fired in the area of 23rd and Fillmore streets around 2:10 p.m., police said.

While officers were on their way to the scene, which was near Interstate 10 and Van Buren Street, additional calls came in reporting that a vehicle collided with an electrical pole. The crash knocked down power lines, causing an outage in the area that lasted several hours.

Officers couldn’t reach the driver, later identified as Lagunas, because the live lines were in the way.

After fire department and utility company personnel arrived and deactivated the lines, Lagunas was pronounced dead at the scene.

A man believed to be involved in the shooting was detained during the initial response, but he was released without being arrested. Watson was not the person detained at the scene, police said.

The investigation remains active.

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Arrest made in shooting that led to power outage in Phoenix nearly 3 months ago