Arrests Made In Connection With Cop’s Death

( – Two people have been arrested in connection with the shooting death of an Arizona police officer that occurred early Saturday, June 1. Gila River Police Officer Joshua Briese, 24, and Alicen Apkaw, 23, a bystander, were both shot and killed during an exchange of gunfire near 2 a.m. in Santan, a part of the Gila River Indian Community.

Six people were shot, including another officer, and two men were arrested. One of the suspects is a juvenile and their names have not yet been released to the public. Both suspects received medical care following the shooting; the nature and extent of their injuries were not specified.

FBI and local authorities are continuing to investigate, promising charges when the full scope of the situation is understood. Media covering statements by the FBI suggested the investigation could take some time, referencing “methodical and thorough evidence-gathering.” Agency representatives suggested that the individuals would be charged appropriately once all investigations were completed.

Briese was still a recruit at the time of his death; he’d been on the job less than a year.

Police previously reported that the incident involved a large crowd and that the incident involved multiple gunshots and firearms.

One unidentified witness described the crowd dropping to the ground in an instant as soon as they heard gunshots.

Gila River Indian Community Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis published a statement regarding the incident wherein he described a community in mourning. He expressed sympathy for Briese’s death, as well as the other officer who was injured. He also said the community was grieving for “every community member” who was impacted by the “tragic violence.” He added that Briese’s death was especially sad given his incredible youth.

Yellowstone County Sheriffs published a post on their Facebook page in support of Briese; they said that his father was also in law enforcement, serving as a sheriff’s deputy until his death in 2006 in a car accident.

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