Phoenix police officer shot in the line of duty; suspect indicted on attempted murder charge
PHOENIX -- The Scottsdale man accused of shooting a Phoenix police officer during a traffic stop has been indicted. Officer Adrian Cruz is still recovering at home after he was shot twice in the chest last month.
41-year-old Brett Knudsen is facing a charge of attempted murder of a police officer, aggravated assault and three counts of endangering witnesses. His bond was set at $500,000 cash.
Police say Knudsen fired at Cruz after the officer pulled his car over in north Phoenix. Cruz was standing next to the car when Knudsen allegedly shot him at close range through the driver's side window.
Officer Cruz immediately returned fire and Knudsen was shot in the arm, thigh and back.
After nearly a month in a hospital, Knudsen was booked into jail. Officials could not comment on Knudsen's injuries, or whether he is now wheelchair-bound.
Knudsen told investigators he "had a moment of insanity" and admitted to the shooting. He does not have a criminal background and at one point, worked as an actor.
Meanwhile, Cruz continues to recover at home. He has several cuts on his face from the shattered window.
"Just the physical injuries is not the reason he's home. Obviously, it's an emotional toll it takes on anyone involved in such a violent encounter, so it's an emotional and physical recuperation he's going through right now," said Phoenix Police Sgt. Mercedes Fortune.
Cruz has only been on the force for a year and a half. It's unknown how long he will be at home recovering, but police say the traumatic experience has not ended his career.
"He wants to continue to be a police officer and serving the community and he wants to come back," said Fortune. "He's one of our newer officers and very thankful he's alive."
Police say there were three witnesses in a vehicle behind Cruz's patrol car. They could have been hurt as Knudsen fired several rounds at the wounded officer, who took cover behind his car.
Knudsen is also facing three counts of felony endangerment. If convicted on all charges, he could face a maximum of 16 years in prison.