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July 27, 2014

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Armed-robbery suspect critically wounded by Metro Police gunfire

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Steve Marcus

Traffic on Charleston Boulevard is diverted away from the scene of an officer-involved shooting near Charleston and U.S. 95, Monday, March 3, 2014.

Updated Monday, March 3, 2014 | 10:10 p.m.

OIS by Charleston and Highway 95

An Nevada of Transportation truck drops off traffic cones near the scene of an officer-involved shooting by Charleston Boulevard and Highway 95 Monday, March 3, 2014. Launch slideshow »

Metro Police shot an armed-robbery suspect late Monday afternoon after the man pointed a gun at officers pursuing him, officials said.

The officer-involved shooting happened about 3:40 p.m. on the on-ramp to U.S. 95 from Charleston Boulevard, shutting down traffic at that interchange for hours during rush hour. An alert from the Regional Transportation Commission reported that all traffic in the area was reopened by 10 p.m.

The incident began with a report of an in-progress vehicle burglary on Suzy Court, a residential street off North Sandhill Road. When confronted by the homeowner, the male suspect produced a firearm and demanded money, said Capt. Csaba Maczala, who oversees Metro’s robbery and homicide division.

The pair exchanged words and after failing to obtain money, the suspect ran across the street and threatened a second victim, Maczala said. Officers' arrival in the area, however, cut that encounter short.

As the man fled, he pointed a gun at a third citizen and then an officer, forcing the officer to dive for safety, Maczala said. The suspect continued running through a backyard and scaled a wall to reach the on-ramp to U.S. 95.

When officers confronted him again, the suspect ignored their verbal commands, raised his firearm and pointed at them, prompting the officers to shoot, Maczala said. It’s unclear how many officers fired their weapons.

The suspect was shot in his front torso area and transported to University Medical Center, where he remains in critical condition, Maczala said.

Police said it will take significant time to piece together a more detailed timeline of the events.

“We have a lot of people — double digits — that we need to interview to get the real story,” Maczala said.

The on- and off-ramps to U.S. 95 from Charleston Boulevard remained closed until about 9:45 p.m. Charleston was also shut down in both directions near the highway during that time.

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