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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soundoff (335 Responses)
  1. Calvin

    So what happens when anyone resembling a hispanic background begin to "proflie" every law enforcement officer as someone who favors this new law....it's worth a thought.

    April 30, 2010 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Lou

    I say you are full of bullshit Scarlette

    April 30, 2010 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. MJW

    Legalize marijuana and you'll kill the cartels primary source of income. Sell it in a state store with a seal on it. Not available in clubs and is prohibited from being in public. As long as the seal is not broken, it will be legal to take it to your residence. If it "is" broken, a strong penalty/fine including hail time will be enforced. You will kill the mexican cartel border economy and boost our own. Other drugs people are less inclined to do, so it would actually help more to legalize it.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Meggie

    Why keep calling them "undocumented immigrant"? They are illegal alien invaders.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Eric Kramer

    There was a time when journalists made some effort to get the words right.
    The assailant had a machine gun. He was going to use it to help him pick tomatoes?
    If this is true, he was probably not an immigrant but a smuggler.
    An immigrant comes to this country to work and live.
    A smuggler comes to this country to deliver something of value and then returns to get more.
    It may seem like semantics, but requiring the police to rough up the tomato pickers (to say nothing of those Hispanics who have lived in the area for 400 years) does nothing to confront the smugglers.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jerry Evans

    WHATIS IT THAT YOU A HOLES DON'T UNDERSTAND ABOUT UNDOCUMENTED ALIEINS OR ILLEGAL ALIENS.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Bill

    The Mexican government shots illegal immigrants (Guatemalans) on sight.
    What do you think, USA? Time to adopt the same immigration policy here?
    Just kidding, but how much longer will the USA have to tolerate this BS for
    fear of being called racist. That card has been played and it's a Joker.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  8. michelle

    All you pro-illegal jerks made this happen. And it was probably a good family man, white person that was killed. The last type of person we can afford to loose. This is exactly why we need to kick them all out and shut up the racists latinos and blacks that are enjoying this killing spree entirely too much. You should be ashamed!

    April 30, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  9. jose

    Waahhhh waaaahhhh white people are crying because BROWN people are moving into thier neighborhood/state/city waaaahhhhhh. All i have to say is get used to it, we are not going anywhere an we are the fastest growing grp in america so racist ppl get used to us.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  10. michelle

    RE: Bill's comment at 9:00ET....the idea of shooting illegals on site, as long as it's by police authorized to do so and NOT by the average Joe, would be a blessing to the law-abiding people of this country. If they kill us, why can't our cops protect us?

    April 30, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. southerngirl

    Was a deputy really shot? If so, how do you now the shoter was an illegal immigrant? The people who inacted this law will do anything to convince themselves that this bill is needed.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Deidre

    Now this is a coincidence................

    April 30, 2010 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jim

    Not "undocumented immigrants" you morons. ILLEGAL ALIENS! If you get just one thing right get this one.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  14. SFTitan

    Gang banger in the dessert?? This was an illegal immigrant either smuggling drugs or more illegals. This is why we need new tough laws. This is sickening. Further proof we need this law. Down with illegal scum!!

    April 30, 2010 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Gramma M

    I don't understand why illegals think they have the right to break our laws in the first place! There is no excuse for that. It's simple folks! Break the law, go to jail, or get sent to your own homeland.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
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