| Crime |

Maricopa County Sheriff's Deputy Fatally Shoots Naked, Erratic Army Veteran

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

An army veteran was shot and killed by a Maricopa County Sheriff's deputy yesterday in Fountain Hills, the Sheriff's Office says.

David Brandstetter, 26, was walking naked in traffic at around 12:45 a.m. Sunday, prompting two calls to 911 as drivers swerved to avoid striking him, MCSO reports.

See also: -ACLU: Arizona Police Have So Much Military Equipment They're "Equipped to Wage a War" -Remembering Marty Atencio, the Latest Fatality in Joe Arpaio's Jail

Lieutenant Markley Johnson responded to the calls and found Brandstetter walking on a residential Fountain Hills street "acting erratically," an MCSO press release says.

Brandstetter allegedly opened the door of Johnson's patrol car, jumped on the officer, punched him, and demanded his gun, according to MCSO. When Brandstetter then tried to force the weapon away from Johnson, the deputy shot him, according to MCSO's account. Paramedics pronounced Brandstetter dead at the scene, MCSO reports.

The incident occurred just a mile from Brandstetter's residence.

"Something may have caused this young man to take leave of his senses," Sheriff Joe Arpaio says in a statement. "It's a sad situation all around. But regardless of the reason, the suspect's actions left no alternative for my deputy."

Johnson has been employed with the MCSO for 29 years.

Brandstetter was released from the army slightly over a year ago, MCSO reports. He was married with three children and worked as an air conditioning technician, according to the agency.

A request for additional information was not immediately returned.

Got a tip? Send it to: Ashley Cusick.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX.

Follow Ashley Cusick on Twitter at @AshleyBCusick.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.