A sheriff’s deputy in California was shot by ‘unprovoked gunfire’ on his way to work in Ceres on Friday in what police believe was an alcohol-fueled unintentional firing.
The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office said the unnamed deputy was driving to work in a marked K-9 patrol vehicle near Central Avenue and Service Road around 7 p.m. on Friday when the gunfire broke out.
Jesus Cortes, 38, was arrested for felony negligent discharge of a firearm, Sgt Luke Schwartz confirmed to DailyMail.com.
The suspect told police he did not intentionally fire at the officer but was arrested and charged with dangerously and recklessly firing a firearm. Police said: ‘alcohol was believed to be a factor.’
No injuries or damage to the deputy’s car were reported. Eight people have been detained and one person was arrested in connection to the shooting.
Cortes was booked into the Stanislaus County Public Safety Center but has since been released after making his $25,000 bail. Seven other men were questioned by the police but no one else was charged.
A firearm was recovered. The deputy never discharged his own weapon.
The Sheriff’s Office told CBS Sacramento that the office jumped out of his ‘patrol car and took cover in a nearby orchard.’
A sheriff’s deputy in central California was met with ‘unprovoked gunfire’ while driving to work on Friday around 7pm (Pictured: The scene near Central Avenue and Service Road in Ceres, California)
This comes after gunman shot and killed his ex-girlfriend and injured nine officers after using his baby daughter to lure police and ambush them early Friday morning, Arizona police said.
Police responded to calls that Morris Jones, 36, had shot and killed his ex-girlfriend, who police have yet to identify.
When they arrived, they found Jones inside. As police surrounded the Phoenix, Arizona, home, another man was seen walking outside with Jones and his ex-girlfriend’s baby and leaving it on the porch, before surrendering to police.
As officers approached the porch to rescue the infant, Jones opened fire. A total of nine officers were injured.
Police said there is nothing to suggest that the man who carried out the baby was part of the ambush – he may have been following instructions from Jones.
Cops later found Jones dead inside the home, from what appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams confirmed that four officers were hospitalized and treated for gunshot wounds, with one of the cops undergoing surgery.
Williams said she was ‘upset’ at the senseless violence in the community and said the video captured the incident ‘still gives me chills.’
‘But as gunfire was raging out, our officers went in,’ she said, praising the heroic cops. ‘As a baby was left on the door steps, our officers went to rescue her.’
Phoenix police officers are seen running for their lives after being fired upon by Morris Jones inside a home during a tense five-hour standoff with a gunman on Friday
Jones opened fire after a man placed Jones’ baby on the porch, along with a pink bag
The officer shooting come after the FBI recorded a 26-year high for on-duty police officers intentionally killed across the United States last year, as overall crime and murder rates hit record highs, falling just one short of the all-time grim mark of 74.
There were 73 cops who died in the line of duty from a ‘felonious killing’ last year, according to data provided by the FBI and first shared with CNN, a 59% increase from 2020’s total of 46.
A ‘felonious killing’ is defined by the FBI as an instance when an officer is ‘fatally injured as a direct result of a willful and intentional act by an offender.’
The grim mark excludes the police death toll in 2001, when 72 officers lost their lives in the 9/11 terror attacks – on top of the 70 officers who were killed by domestic criminals.
While COVID has remained the leading cause of police deaths in recent years, there has been an increase in ‘unprovoked’ attacks on officers.
Twenty-five of last year’s felonious killings were ‘unprovoked’ attacks through December 27 of last year, according to the FBI. This is a sharp spike in attacks on officers, which are normally reported in the single digits.
An ‘unprovoked’ attack is defined as a situation ‘not prompted by official contact at the time of the incident,’ according to the FBI.
The FBI told CNN that it has opened an investigation into this drastic increase, which is spread throughout the country.
The number of accidental on-duty police deaths increased, as well, with 56 officers accidentally killed in the line of duty last year, up from 46 in 2020.
While the official 2021 Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted report has been published, the FBI reported that 55 officers were killed by gunfire in 2021 through the end of November, a jump from 39 for the same time period in both 2020 and 2019.
Homicides and gun violence has been rising across the country in recent years, spiking after the highly publicized killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor in 2020 and the start of the COVID pandemic.
‘When homicides go up, more shootings go up, and it contributes to an overall increase in violence and police officers find themselves in the middle of that environment,’ said Chuck Wexler, the executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF).
Last year, 13 cities in the United States shattered their annual homicide records – all Democrat-run bastions that have pushed progressive policies, including Oakland, Philadelphia and Portland, Oregon.
A study found 2020 recorded the country’s highest rate of anti-police sentiment in history
The Black Lives Matter movement, which reached an all-time level of support in 2020 after a multitude of high-profile police killings of black Americans, pushed the anti-police sentiment and defund the police movement into the mainstream.
‘For the first time, the percentage of Americans who say they have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the police has dipped below 50 percent. It’s now at 48 percent, and over the 20 years we’ve been tracking this, it’s never been below 50 percent,’ Steve Crabtree of Gallup noted when commenting on a 2020 Gallup poll.
Those numbers have seen a slight rebound since the poll was conducted in the summer of 2020 but strong anti-police sentiments still linger throughout the country.
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk