Eager Arizona - On Nov 5, 2001 at 11:40pm, Apache County Sheriff's deputies attempted to serve an arrest warrant on a known felon, William Milton Cooper, (58 years of age) at his residence located at 96 North Clearview Circle in Eagar AZ. Cooper was considered armed and dangerous. During the execution of this warrant, Cooper was fatally shot by deputies after he shot and struck a sheriffs deputy.

Members of the Apache County Sheriffs Office deployed several deputies in the area adjacent to Cooper"s home in an attempt to draw him from his residence to serve an arrest warrant. After leaving his residence in his vehicle, Cooper confronted plainclothes deputies a short distance away. As Cooper drove back to his residence, Sheriffs deputies attempted to stop him using a fully marked patrol vehicle to block the roadway. Cooper refused to stop or comply with verbal orders issued by deputies. Cooper drove around the patrol vehicle off the roadway and attempted to run over a sergeant before heading back to his residence. Cooper was followed a short distance to the front of his residence where he was again confronted by uniformed deputies. After refusing once again to comply with orders from deputies, Cooper exited his vehicle and ran toward his house, firing shots from a handgun towards deputies. Deputy Robert Marinez of the Apache County Sheriff's Office was struck in the head by at least one round. Deputies returned fire suwng and fatally wounding Cooper.

Deputy Marinez was transported by ground ambulance to The White Mountain Regional Medical Center and then flown to a Trauma Unit in Phoenix. Deputy Marinez was last reported to be in critical condition.

Deputy Marinez has served as a law enforcement officer for 4 years and was serving as a tactical officer at the time of the shooting. His experience also includes patrol and criminal investigation. Deputy Marinez is 40 years old and has served as a United States Marine during Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Deputy Marinez is married with three children.

Cooper threatened to kill law enforcement personnel and made those threats known through the use of his web site, radio station and personal messages. Cooper has a history of harassing and threatening local residents with deadly force. He recently was charged with aggravated assault and endangerment. Cooper was also wanted by the United Stated Marshal's Office for unrelated felony charges.

Following the shooting, the scene was secured by officers from the Eagar Police Department and Apache County Sheriff's Deputies. The Arizona Department of Public Safety's Special Investigations Unit is conducting a criminal investigation into the shooting at the request of the Eagar Police Department and the Apache County SherifFs Office. DPS Special Operations Units were called to the scene to clew the residence of any potential hazards that may exist.

For further information contact: Sheriff Brian Hounshell, Apache County Sheriff s Office, (928) 337-4321
Chief Scott Ganns, Eager Police Department, (928) 333-4127