MESA, AZ — A man has been released from the hospital and arrested after an officer-involved shooting in Mesa.
The incident happened around 6:20 p.m. Wednesday near Broadway Road and Country Club Drive.
According to Mesa police, officers were attempting to conduct a traffic stop when the suspect vehicle took off.
The vehicle stopped about a half-mile away, police say. Officers started to chase the suspects after two men, both 32 years old, jumped out of the car and took off running in different directions.
According to a Mesa police spokesperson, the passenger, Esteban Grageda, pulled a handgun on officers during the chase.
One of the officers, a member of the Mesa Gang Task Force, shot at the Grageda multiple times and the suspect threw his handgun over a railway nearby, according to Commander Ed Wessing.
"He turned and pulled a handgun out. The officer recognized that as a handgun. He was immediately able to engage that suspect and fired upon him, feeling threatened for his life, for his own safety," said Wessing.
One witness to the entire chase and shooting told ABC15 a different story about the shooting.
He claims the officer fired shots while the suspect was running away, back turned, and after he had already thrown the gun over the railing.
"He just threw whatever bag he had in his hands to the side, over the wall, and he didn’t stop or anything like that. He just kept running. And as soon that he threw that, he was shot," said Dustin Davila-Bojorquez, who says he watched the shooting unfold.
"I was just really shocked to see what happened and to see that guy just got shot in the back and I just wanted to get out of there because I didn’t want to be in any sort of danger right then."
Grageda was taken to the hospital in critical condition, but is expected to survive.
The driver of the car, 32-year-old Jose Preciado, was captured a short time later in a nearby neighborhood. He was taken into custody without incident, police said. He faces one charge of unlawful flight from law enforcement.
Mesa police say no officers were injured, and because they are gang task force, officers were not wearing body cameras.
Grageda was hospitalized after the shooting but has been released and booked into jail. He faces charges for aggravated assault on law enforcement and misconduct involving weapons.
Grageda allegedly told police they ran because they were both in the country illegally and were scared.
MESA OFFICER INVOLVED SHOOTING:— Zach Crenshaw (@ZachCrenshaw) June 13, 2019
Mesa PD confirming an OIS near Lebaron & Broadway.
Country Club Dr is closed. There appears to be a gun in the middle of CC Dr.
A witness tells us he heard “three shots.”
Some agents here wearing FBI vests.
Working to get more info.... pic.twitter.com/uPJ6tTSWA6
Stay with ABC15 News and abc15.com for updates to this developing story.