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Man arrested after shooting at officer while driving in Las Vegas

Updated December 10, 2019 - 7:45 pm

Las Vegas police arrested a man who shot at an off-duty officer Tuesday afternoon while the two were driving near Blue Diamond Road and Interstate 15.

About 3:45 p.m., the off-duty Metropolitan Police Department officer was driving on Blue Diamond near the highway when a driver attempted to cut him off multiple times, police said. The other driver then pulled up next to the officer’s driver-side window and shot at him several times before speeding off and rear-ending another car, Lt. Jose Hernandez told reporters during a news briefing Tuesday evening.

The off-duty officer followed the driver through “heavy traffic,” catching up to him and identifying himself as an officer after the driver rear-ended the other vehicle, Hernandez said.

“The subject was still armed at this time, but he did exit the vehicle and dropped his handgun,” he said.

The off-duty officer, with the help of a Nevada Highway Patrol trooper, arrested the man, Hernandez said. Both the man arrested and the driver of the vehicle that was rear-ended were taken to University Medical Center with minor injuries.

“As of right now, our investigation indicates that no one was hurt or injured by the shots being fired by the suspect,” Hernandez said.

It was unclear what prompted the man to cut off the officer or fire at him. It was also unclear if the driver knew the other man was an officer when he fired his gun.

Hernandez said “at the very minimum” the man could face a charge of assault with a deadly weapon.

The Nevada Department of Transportation tweeted about 3:54 p.m. that a crash had happened 10 minutes prior on I-15 northbound near Russell Road, which is about 3 miles north of Blue Diamond Road.

“As the suspect fled from the scene, of course through heavy traffic, he wasn’t able to get very far,” Hernandez said, adding that the crash happened “not very far from where the actual incident occurred.”

Further information about the shooting or the man arrested was not immediately available. Hernandez said drivers should expect delays in the area, and that the Blue Diamond on-ramp to northbound I-15 would be closed for “a couple hours” Tuesday night as police investigate.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0381. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

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