Man who shot Phoenix officer in 2022 ambush attack sentenced to 14 years in prison

May 16, 2024, 9:00 AM

PHOENIX — A man who shot one officer and injured another in an ambush attack two years ago in Phoenix was recently sentenced to 14 years in prison, authorities said.

Devonte Thornton, 31, pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated assault in April, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office said on Wednesday.

“The officers were inches away from death,” Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell said in a press release. “We know that the work of a police officer is dangerous as they put themselves in harm’s way, but this was not just being in harm’s way; this was an attempt against their lives.”

Here’s what prosecutors say Thornton did to the 2 officers

Thornton and an accomplice led police who attempted a traffic stop to an apartment complex at 27th and Maryland avenues around 1 a.m. on March 13, 2022, prosecutors said.

Thornton then stepped out of the complex and shot at the officers, striking the passenger officer in his right arm, prosecutors said. In total, 18 shell casings were recovered from the scene. The officer who was driving was hit by pieces of flying glass.

He was a convicted felon from Missouri and, therefore, a prohibited possessor.

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Man who shot Phoenix officer in 2022 ambush attack sentenced to 14 years in prison