Officer Rolando Tirado, left, and Officer Christopher Paz
Photo credit: Buckeye Police Department
Phoenix police said two off-duty Buckeye police officers were involved in a gun battle while working security during an event Saturday night at El Gran Mercado, 1800 S. 35th Ave. in Phoenix.
Phoenix police spokesman Sgt. Tommy Thompson said the shooting happened about 1:15 a.m.
Investigators believe officers Rolando Tirado and Christopher Paz went to talk with some people in a car that was driving recklessly at the complex when things turned deadly.
"During the course of the altercation it turned into a gun battle, unfortunately during that gun battle one of the Buckeye police officers was shot and killed. In addition, one of the suspects was also shot and killed," said Thompson.
The second officer, Christopher Paz was shot multiple times along with one of the remaining suspects. Both were taken to a local hospital in critical condition.
Police set up a large area around the large swap meet grounds looking for a possible third man involved in the shooting, but no one else has been arrested.
Phoenix police wer handling the investigation, but they said their hearts go out to their Buckeye brothers.
"We work together as a family, certainly it is the Buckeye department that has suffered this loss but all of us do and we as the Phoenix Police Department are doing all that we can to help and work through this," said Thompson.
For now investigators want to concentrate on finding answers and the people responsible they say suspects willing to shoot and kill an officer are far too dangerous to have loose on the streets.
"If a person is willing to shoot at an officer then certainly willing to shoot a citizen and think nothing of it," said Thompson.
Most recently CBS 5 news was told officer Paz has come out surgery and is able to talk with family.
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