CHANDLER — A Chandler police officer is recovering after getting hit with a pepper spray-like substance.
Authorities say around noon on Thursday a patrol officer was conducting a frequent patrol of Albertson’s, located at Gilbert and Riggs Road in Chandler.
The officer observed a suspicious vehicle, identified as a black four-door Honda, leave the area and observed a traffic violation as it turned onto Gilbert Road.
The officer conducted a traffic stop, just south of this location, where the officer contacted two occupants.
Chandler PD says as the officer began asking for the license and paperwork, the driver sprayed him in the face with a substance similar to pepper spray.
The officer was temporarily blinded, had difficulty breathing, and had a burning sensation on his face.
The two occupants sped off in the Honda as the officer requested immediate assistance.
The officer received treatment by fire department personnel and is recovering.
Investigators learned the license plate number belonging to the vehicle involved and contacted the registered owner, Frank Zamora.
The officer identified Zamora as the person who assaulted him.
Zamora and his passenger had also just committed a theft at the Alberston’s, which the officer involved found out later.
Police contacted Zamora shortly after 2:00 p.m. near Central and Dobbins.
He was booked into the Maricopa County jail for aggravated assault on a police officer, among other charges.
Investigators were able to connect Zamora to previous shoplifts in Chandler.