A Charlotte, NC man sideswiped another vehicle Thursday afternoon and refused to stop, prompting the driver of that vehicle to follow the hit-and-run suspect while on the phone with 911 dispatchers. The hit-and-run suspect then stopped, and the driver jumped out of the vehicle with a gun in his hand.
That proved to be a bad move, as the vehicle he hit was an unmarked Charlotte-Mecklenburg police car, and the driver was an undercover cop who turned out the be pretty good with a gun.
“Then at some point the vehicle that was immediately in front of the undercover officer’s car stopped, driver got of out of vehicle, produced a handgun, and shots were fired from the undercover detective, unfortunately striking and killing the driver,”Deputy Chief Jeff Estes said.
Estes said the incident was an apparent case of road rage.
“Everything is initial here but that’s what it appears – a road rage incident that unfortunately turned out to be tragic, fatal,” Estes continued.
Estes said he wasn’t sure if [Josue Javier] Diaz, a Hispanic man, fired any shots after getting out of the vehicle.
“I don’t know any details about how the weapon was produced,” Estes said. “I can tell you we recovered it on the scene right there.”
According to CMPD, the officer is also Hispanic. The officer’s name is not being released “due to the undercover nature of [his] assignment. Per department protocol, the detective will be placed on Administrative Leave, which is standard procedure.
No officers were injured in the shooting.
Predictably, anti-police social justice warriors rushed to the scene to share their abject ignorance.
A small group of people gathered at the scene shortly after the shooting to protest. At one point, after investigators reopened Albemarle Road the group attempted to block traffic.
One man, who asked not to be identified, didn’t know Diaz, but came out after hearing the shots.
“They’re Hispanic and they could be my brother. But it doesn’t matter because he was just doing his job,” he said.
Another man was seen repeatedly yelling at police. He told WBTV he didn’t agree with what happened to Diaz.
“They’ve got tasers, they’ve got pepper spray, there are other ways,” he said.
As we’ve noted repeatedly, pepper spray and tasers (along with less-lethal shotgun baton loads and batons) are equipment for dealing with suspects who are not armed with ranged weapons like firearms. When a suspect has a firearm, the only appropriate counter for law enforcement or any other citizen is a firearm, or to borrow from Wayne LaPierre, “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”