Phoenix officers involved in shooting while attempting to search home with drug activity

PHOENIX - Police are investigating an officer-involved shooting in Phoenix, making it the 44th officer-involved shooting incident in the Valley in 2018.

The incident happened in the area of 27th and Southern avenues on Thursday morning. 

According to a police spokeswoman, officers were serving a search warrant at a home suspected of drug activity. 

As officers approached the front door, a suspect fired through it toward officers, authorities said. An officer fired a "suppression shot" toward the house to warn the suspects inside. Gas was used and the suspect stopped firing. 

Police say bullet shrapnel and debris hit some officers but their protective vests helped them escape serious injury. Two officers received minor injuries from the shrapnel and were treated on scene by fire personnel.

The men and women came outside of the house and were placed in custody, authorities said. 

After officers entered the home and began their investigation, multiple weapons were found and indications of drug sales. Detectives gained enough probable cause to arrest 30-year-old Steve Harris for multiple drug and weapons violations.

None of the suspects were injuries during the incident and an investigation is ongoing. The officer who fired the shot will be placed on leave during the investigation.

The shooting is the 26th officer-involved shooting in Phoenix this year.

The incident comes a day after Phoenix police chief Jeri Williams and other city officials proposed a subcommittee to study and analyze the recent spike in officer-involved shootings

However, opponents argue that it's a potential waste of taxpayer money and say it would be more beneficial to teach the public how to interact with officers.

On Tuesday, a Phoenix officer shot and killed 24-year-old Alexandre J. Aldrich near Central Avenue and Osborn Road.

In that incident, police say officers attempted to handcuff the suspect and a struggle ensued. After several attempts to use a stun gun and strike him, the man fled with one handcuff placed on him, a police spokesperson said.

Aldrich was located shortly after and ignored officers’ verbal commands and raised the handcuff as a weapon, officials said. An officer shot the man and he was pronounced dead at the hospital.

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