ARIZONA NEWS

Phoenix police officer fatally shoots armed shoplifting suspect overnight

May 8, 2024, 5:55 AM | Updated: May 9, 2024, 11:18 am

An investigation was underway May 8, 2024, after an armed shoplifting suspect was fatally shot by a...

An armed shoplifting suspect was fatally shot Tuesday evening by a Phoenix police officer, authorities said. (AP File Photo)

(AP File Photo)

PHOENIX — An armed shoplifting suspect was fatally shot Tuesday evening by a Phoenix police officer, authorities said.

An officer on routine patrol was contacted by a convenience store employee around 11:45 p.m. near 35th Avenue, south of Interstate 10, reporting a shoplifting incident, the Phoenix Police Department said. The employee then identified two individuals nearby as the suspects.

The officer followed the suspects as one fled south on 35th Avenue and the other headed east on Roosevelt Street. The officer pursued the man who ran east.

What led up to the fatal shooting of the armed shoplifting suspect?

As the officer got closer, the suspect, who was identified as 27-year-old Christopher Tavares, pulled out a handgun and started to shoot in the direction of the officer, police said. The officer’s police Tahoe was struck multiple times.

The officer then fired back at Tavares, striking him at least once, police said.

Tavares was detained and taken to a hospital, where he later died from his injuries.

The second suspect involved in the shoplifting wasn’t found.

The area was closed as an investigation into the incidents was ongoing.

Officials at Carl Hayden High School said classes will start late at 11 a.m. due to the shooting investigation, according to ABC15.

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Phoenix police officer fatally shoots armed shoplifting suspect overnight