Tempe driver killed by Arizona trooper during barricade situation on Loop 101

A driver who Arizona DPS says barricaded himself inside his car and then pulled a gun out was shot and killed on Loop 101 in Tempe early Sunday.

The incident began around 2 a.m. on May 5 near Loop 101 and University Drive when a trooper stopped a car that was parked on the side of the highway.

"The vehicle matched the description of a vehicle recently reported for erratic driving behavior. The trooper attempted to contact the driver of the vehicle, who then refused to follow commands and barricaded himself inside the vehicle," Arizona DPS said.

By around 2:30 a.m., DPS says the driver took out a gun and that's when the trooper shot the suspect.

The suspect, Lemonte Anthony Knobelock, 44, of Mesa, was killed. No troopers were hurt in this incident.

Former officer reviews scene footage

Andy Anderson, former Phoenix Police Assistant Chief, has reviewed a lot of police shootings in his life.

The former officer reviewed the video of the deadly shooting which starts off with DPS troopers boxing in the driver with their SUVs.

"Clearly, he's become very desperate at this point," he said. "They figured out a way to keep him stopped by bringing that vehicle to the front and backing up into him. You can see where he's spinning his front tires, front-wheel drive, and he can't get out, so they're protecting the community around him while still dealing with him."

DPS says they tried talking with the driver for nearly 30 minutes.

"These are incredibly dangerous situations. You can see the traffic still moving here because they didn't know that was going to happen. Had they known he was going to bring deadly force, I'm confident they would have shut down traffic," Anderson said.

It's not clear when troopers knew the suspect had a gun, but as the wheels started spinning out, troopers approached with shields.

"He opens fire, or the gun comes up. You can tell they all recognize it at the same time," Anderson said.

The loss of life, he says, is a tragedy.

"These are tragic situations. You don't want anybody to lose their lives in these situations, but the priority of the officers is protecting the rest of the community," Anderson said.

Map of Loop 101 and University Drive