April 30th, 2010
09:05 PM ET

Authorities: Ariz. deputy shot by suspected drug traffickers

[Updated at 11:00 p.m.] A sheriff's deputy in central Arizona was shot Friday afternoon by a suspected drug trafficker, authorities said.

The Pinal County deputy, who was not immediately identified, contacted authorities after being wounded in the desert, saying he had been shot by an illegal immigrant with an AK-47, said Lt. Tammy Villar, a sheriff's spokeswoman.

[Posted at 9:05 p.m.] A sheriff's deputy in central Arizona who was shot Friday afternoon by an alleged illegal immigrant has been found after authorities lost contact with him, according to CNN affiliate KPNX.

The report came from a KPNX reporter on board a chopper at the scene.

[Posted at 8:41 p.m.] A sheriff's deputy in central Arizona was shot Friday afternoon by a member of an alleged group of illegal immigrants, authorities said.

The Pinal County deputy, who was not immediately identified, contacted authorities after being wounded in a remote area, said Lt. Tammy Villar, a sheriff's spokeswoman. She said authorities believe he was shot with a AK-47. The deputy was being treated for the wound, but his condition was not immediately known, Villar said.

Pinal County is located between Phoenix and Tuscon and has been described as a key transit point for illegal immigrants. Sheriff Paul Babeu told CNN that an estimated 80 percent of illegal immigrants eventually pass through his county along the way to other locations.

Deputies in the department routinely patrol for illegal immigrants and smugglers, and it's not uncommon for them to be in the field alone, officials said.

It was not immediately clear what led the deputy to engage with the group on Friday.

- CNN's Casey Wian contributed to this report.

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  1. azgalatea

    Good for you CNN. You called it right, as it is drug and people smugglers, NOT illegal aliens that cause the problems. The drug smugglers have AK47s and hurt our AZ police. Thank you.

    May 1, 2010 at 1:15 am | Report abuse |
  2. az supporter

    It is really sad that all these complainers from other states are protesting a state that they dont even live in. Why dont you come on down and live here for a few months and see whats going on.... Have your family shot at or kidnapped or raped... Its not the poor immigrants fault.. they are also killed and raped and beat by these drug cartel.... And why is anyone walking around in arizona with an AK -47... Why does our government allow people from other countries to invade our country like this... I am so sick and tired of these liberal losers....

    May 1, 2010 at 1:34 am | Report abuse |
  3. Carson

    The arresting of illegal invaders is not tolerated but the shooting of Sheriff's Deputies is!

    May 1, 2010 at 1:34 am | Report abuse |
  4. Mike

    Kind of coincedental that suspected undocumented aliens shoot at a officer who is out of his assigned jurisdiction with an AK-47 with no other witnesses and only a flesh wound...days after the bill passed and a day before May Day protests??? I hope that isnt the case, but just seems like there will be more to this story in the coming days...

    May 1, 2010 at 2:12 am | Report abuse |
  5. Maria

    Poor Guy. Hope he is doing okay!

    Sooo confused as to why this is becoming a race issue?! No one is saying screw all mexicans or latino's. It's only about the "ILLEGAL" ones. My family migrated Legally before I was born. Yes, it can be done. The bottom line is: People shouldn't be allowed to do illegal things. I don't get to go into a store and steal things and get away with it, why should anyone be allowed to do illegal acts and get away with it.

    I don't care what country you are from or what race...but if you come into my country illegally there Should be repercussions!!! It's not about what color your skin is. STOP trying to pull the race card... it's getting really old. By the way I'm Latina.

    Also what is all this "they have civil liberties this isn't fair". If they aren't legal citizens of the US than they don't get civil liberties... I am an American that doesn't mean I have Chinese rights, or Mexican rights because derrrr I'm not a citizen of those countries! They'll get civil liberties when they migrate LEGALLY.

    May 1, 2010 at 3:24 am | Report abuse |
  6. Rob Drobel

    As usual, somebody weighs in from far away, all of a sudden, because we had finally had to pass the Federal Law, at the state level, to put some teeth in it, so that we might finally and legally protect ourselves. The claims of racism make me sick. These claims are made by political operatives and the misinformed. To get the Feds, Ice and the Border Patrol to work with us, we get their help sometimes but not at others. The Feds have actually protected the rights of the lawbreakers, rather than law enforcement. The law is to give the officers some steady ground to stand on. Do you not think that they go through the same reasonable suspicion, and probable cause every hour of every shift?
    Unfortunately, those who comment should actually visit down here and do a ride along with law enforcement, rather than idiotic speculation that makes a commentator sound ridiculous, and embarrassing. The uninformed telling the public about the issues, makes the situation much worse for all of us. We have been living with this for 2o years of escalation. The feds are useless. the Border Patrol and all federal agents are superbly trained, but they are handcuffed from doing their jobs, because the reality is that their bosses, the politicians and bureaucrats, are power hungry, and afraid of losing their jobs, and their back up plan is to bring in illegals to make them eligible to vote so they can stay in power. Of course if they did their jobs in tune to the will of the people, the majority, then they would not have to be concerned, would they.
    Suspected Drug smugglers? I would call over $1 million in pot, confirmation, not suspicion.Yet people like Luis Gutierrez of Illinois make headline grabbing speeches about racism. A typical left trick. We are not talking about Politics here. We are talking about safety and lives. By the way, about half of hispanic residents, and over 70% of Arizonans in all, say enough of this is enough, and have totally backed the plan. I back people lilke Marco Rubio, mostly, but he has it totally wrong on this one. This is like the Politicians in Washington telling the Generals in Afghanistan, how to fight the war, even though they never served a day in the military. We do not have to call them idiots. they do a good job of identifying that to the world, all on their own.

    May 1, 2010 at 3:39 am | Report abuse |
  7. Rob Drobel

    To Scarlette Begonia-yours is the very ignorance of which I speak. It happens everyday all day. There is not one or two a day coming over. There are hundreds a day. Since we have no jobs and the economy is so bad they are passing through, or they are usually smugglers. Convenient??? Ten of the last twelve officers killed in the line of duty, were killed by illegals. We lead the nation in home invasions, car jackings, and kidnappings. Yesterday the 8th Drop house of the year was busted in Phoenix, 10 smuggled aliens, badly beaten and there for days, and 3 coyotes were arrested, and they were part of the cartels. We have had well over 80 drophouses since 2007, busted with illegals tp who are all beaten severely, to get their relatives back in Mexico, to pay the cartels more money. These are dangerous illegals themselves. If the mainstream press did its job responsibly in reporting these issues, instead of practicing misinformation propaganda for the Obama Regime, the American Public would be better informed. What a shame, that goodu people are so misinformed. To Margaret C. the reason they know that they were drug smugglers and not gang bangers, is that they have the opportunity to work with this day in and day out, and they do not disclose all their evidence. Some questions truly amaze me. To all of the doubters, I suggest you come down to any border state, and see for yourself. misinformed comments, truly make idiots of us all.

    May 1, 2010 at 4:01 am | Report abuse |
  8. Beverly Charbonneau

    Obama and the Feds won't do anything about Illegal Immigration. In fact, Obama cancelled some of the building of the fence! This law was carefully crafted and only gives Arizona the right to enforce the same Fed law that the Feds will not enforce!. The pro-amnesty people are lying about the racial profiling. The far left has nothing left to say, so no matter the subject, they play the race card. Shame on them!!!

    Individuals who are in this country legally have an obligation to prove their legal authorization to be in the United States as well. According to the U.S. Government Official Welcome Guide for New Immigrants, “you must carry proof of your permanent resident status at all times”.

    Exactly what kind of "hardship" is it to ask individuals to carry iderntification. What about a "Green Card?" Following is what
    happens in just a few other countries. Entering the U.S. illegally is
    'ILLEGAL!" Hard working Americans are sick and tired of not only supporting millions of lazy, uneducated people who are citizens, let
    alone have to continue to support millions of ILLEGALS!


    May 1, 2010 at 4:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. TONY

    I got a ticket for speeding the other day,I don't mine paying the fine, but what get me is the cops decide what laws they going to enforce, enforce the law across the board.

    May 1, 2010 at 4:32 am | Report abuse |
  10. latina

    Hey, to comment number 4, Uh, Az is a Republican state, Obama had nothing to do with it. The states are entitled to pass their own state laws.

    May 1, 2010 at 5:03 am | Report abuse |
  11. Rob Drobel

    Dear Sara-

    There is nothing racist about it. It has been this way for all as long as I have been alive and I am 62 now. It is simple. You need some form of ID if you create reasonable suspicion or probable cause, and you are confronted by a police officer, no matter what color you are. It is a racist law, I guess, insofar as if you are brown with no legal papers, you must prove that you belong now, instead of the police officer looking the other way. You have to produce your id if you are white, or black, or red. What about that is so hard for you to understand. Carry your freakin papers if you belong in case you get stopped or confronted. I'm considered Caucasian, although I am half hispanic and a police officer. I have to carry id and so do my anglo friends. so do my black friends. this technique of stirring people up, is a typical tactic of lawbreakers and of the left when they have another agenda. Mostly they just like to disruptive. Put your butt on the line, out there with the smugglers and the scouts and it will change the way your mind works, and what comes out of your mouth. Otherwise, you are just one more person stirring up trouble. People do have to put up with stupidity, because we are all granted the right to say stupid things, under the first amendment.

    May 1, 2010 at 5:16 am | Report abuse |
  12. Anonymous

    Mexico, which annually deports more illegal aliens than the United States does, has much to teach us about how it handles the immigration issue. Under Mexican law, it is a felony to be an illegal alien in Mexico.
    Mexico has a single, streamlined law that ensures that foreign visitors and immigrants are:

    in the country legally;
    have the means to sustain themselves economically;
    not destined to be burdens on society;
    of economic and social benefit to society;
    of good character and have no criminal records; and
    contributors to the general well-being of the nation.
    The law also ensures that:

    immigration authorities have a record of each foreign visitor;
    foreign visitors do not violate their visa status;
    foreign visitors are banned from interfering in the country’s internal politics;
    foreign visitors who enter under false pretenses are imprisoned or deported;
    foreign visitors violating the terms of their entry are imprisoned or deported;
    those who aid in illegal immigration will be sent to prison.

    Maybe americans all need to immigrate illegally enmass to mexico to see how they would solve their illegal immigration problems?

    May 1, 2010 at 8:51 am | Report abuse |
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