In the aftermath of a raid on a Credit Union West branch on Tuesday, a number of local TV stations, including NBC 12 News and Fox 10 Phoenix, were broadcasting dramatic live footage of the chase when the disturbing events unfolded.
Video of the moment police used deadly force has now emerged online. It shows officers in three unmarked SUVs carrying out what is known as a ‘PIT maneuver’ – or precision immobilization technique – to ensnare the getaway vehicle.
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
Unmarked police vehicles surround and block the suspect’s truck before two armed officers then appear to fire at least four rounds into the black Chevy’s windows.
According to the Phoenix Police Department, the incident was sparked by a theft in the Avondale area during which suspects shot at law enforcement.
“Avondale police initiated a pursuit as that vehicle fled from them,” said Sgt Jonathan Howard, of the Phoenix Police Department, reports AZ Central.
“Somewhere in the area of Interstate 10 and 99th Avenue, a Phoenix Police helicopter was able to get overhead and assume control of that pursuit. At that time Avondale Police backed off and left it up to Phoenix Police.”
Investigators say at least three men were involved in the chase through parts of suburban Phoenix and across some of the city’s major thoroughfares.
At two different locations on the west side of Phoenix, two men fled from the vehicle. One man was later traced to a home with the help of a canine unit, and the second is also now in police custody.
The man fatally injured by the city’s SWAT team has since been identified by as 31-year-old Steven Del Rio.
Earlier in helicopter footage broadcast by Fox 10, Del Rio appears to engage in conversation with a woman before dumping a small black bag into a backyard.
The woman is said to be a relation of the 31-year-old, reports NBC 12 News.
The Phoenix Police Department, FBI, Avondale Police Department and the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office are currently investigating the shooting.