Officers shoot, kill burglary suspect in Ahwatukee neighborhood

AHWATUKEE, AZ - Authorities say a burglary suspect shot by three officers in Ahwatukee Wednesday has died.

Phoenix police Sgt. Tommy Thompson said the officer-involved shooting happened shortly after 2:30 p.m. on E. Capistrano Avenue, near 44th Street and Elliot Road.

Thompson said someone caught the man burglarizing a home and called police.

When officers arrived they set up a perimeter and could hear sounds inside the home.

The suspect, identified as 27-year-old Cody Gene Criner, came running out of the house and was chased by officers.

Thompson said that at one point Criner pulled a handgun from his waistband and pointed it at the officers chasing him.

Threatened by this, two of the officers fired their weapons, striking Criner and he went down to the ground. He then pointed the gun at a third officer who also fired at Criner, according to Thompson.

Criner was taken into custody and transported to a local hospital where he died.

Thompson said no officers were hurt in the incident.

Police originally believed there was another suspect involved. They evacuated the area along E. Capistrano and E. San Gabriel avenues, but were unable to find anyone.

Thompson said investigators learned Criner drove to the burglary scene in a pickup truck where a witness saw him do something to the license plate before jumping over a fence to get into the rear yard of the home he broke into.

In addition, investigators found a ski-type cap believed to have been dropped by Criner while he was being chased by the officers.

The gun Criner used is believed to have been a realistic looking pellet gun, Thompson said.

The officers involved were described as a 38-year-old 10-year veteran, a 48-year-old 11-year veteran, and a 47-year-old 21-year veteran.

This is the seventh Valley police shooting since the beginning of this year.

 

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