| News |

Two Phoenix Police Officers Shot, One Killed

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.

Two Phoenix police detectives were shot while chasing a fugitive, authorities say.

The shooter was killed at the scene, near 43rd Avenue and Bethany Home Road.

Phoenix Police Sergeant Steve Martos says three undercover detectives were tracking the man and looking to arrest him on a warrant. The man made them as cops and tried to drive away but crashed at 43rd Avenue and Bethany Home.

At that point, the man got out of the car and ran, at one point shooting back and striking two of the officers.

The third detective shot and killed the suspect, Martos says.

The detectives have been hospitalized, and police say the intersection will be shut down for several hours.

UPDATE 5:35 p.m.: Sergeant Trent Crump says both detectives are in surgery at St. Joseph's hospital.

UPDATE 5:41 p.m.: Police Chief Daniel Garcia says one of the officers has died. He said the officer was a 21-year veteran of the department.

UPDATE 5:49 p.m.: Martos says the officers involved are with the Major Offender Bureau, which is tasked with locating people with arrest warrants related to violent crimes. The other officer who was shot is a nine-year veteran of the department.

UPDATE March 4, 8:11 a.m.: Here's the shooter, 28-year-old William Thornton. State prison records show he was released from prison in January after serving about 18 months of a two-year sentence for resisting arrest and drug possession out of Maricopa County. A warrant was issued for his arrest a few weeks after his release for absconding from parole.

UPDATE 9:18 a.m.: The detective killed in the shooting has been identified as 43-year-old John Hobbs. The other detective, who's recovering from surgery, is 44 years old.

Check back for updates.

Got a tip? Send it to: Matthew Hendley.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX.
Follow Matthew Hendley at @MatthewHendley.

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.