Phoenix/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on April 24, 2024
Phoenix Police Nab Suspect Joe Watson in February Deadly Shootout That Caused Power Outage and FatalitySource: Google Street View

At last, an arrest has been made in the case that shook downtown Phoenix in February. Joe Watson, 34, is behind bars, accused in a deadly shootout that ended in both a fatality and a power-less neighborhood. The incident, detailed by 12news, occurred on Feb. 5, when Erik Lagunas, 44, was found dead in a car that had slammed into a power pole at 24th and Roosevelt streets.

Watson was nabbed yesterday, with the Phoenix Police Department slapping him with multiple felony charges, including murder. The arrest comes after a two-month investigation following the initial horrific finding when police were unable to immediately approach Lagunas's vehicle due to the danger of live downed powerlines. After the scene was made safe, responders discovered the gruesome scene—Lagunas lifeless, with a gunshot wound, pronounced dead right there in his wrecked car. This detail was reported by, marking a tragic end to what began as a shots fired call at around 2 p.m. near 23rd and Fillmore streets.

A puzzling piece of this violent puzzle had officers previously detaining and then releasing a man in connection with the incident. It isn't clear if Watson was this same individual or someone else initially overlooked. 

Despite the arrest, the investigation doesn't halt; it continues to unearth more answers. Police indicate that after Watson's arrest, they still have to thoroughly build the case against him.