Sheriff's office identifies man killed in I-80 officer-involved shooting

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SALT LAKE COUNTY -- Salt Lake City police say an officer shot and killed a 30-year-old Salt Lake County man who appeared to be suicidal and threatened officers with his truck. It happened on Interstate 80 at 11800 West near Lake Point just before 12:30 p.m. Thursday.

The Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office has identified the driver who was killed as Christopher Joseph Tucker of Sandy.

The call first came in to Salt Lake City police dispatch Thursday morning of a suicidal male in a gray truck. The same truck was tied to a hit-and-run on 2700 West and California Avenue around noon. That's when officers first tried to pull Tucker over, but he would not stop.

Christopher Joseph Tucker
Christopher Joseph Tucker

Troopers tried twice to spin the truck out of control; once on State Route 202, which was unsuccessful, and then again on I-80. The pit maneuver forced Tucker's truck to spin around and face the bumper of a patrol car.

But when officers tried to make an arrest, Tucker tried to ram one of the officers who was outside of his car. That's when a Salt Lake City police officer fired his gun.

Lt. Don Hutson, with the Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office, said, "The officer who fired the shots was in front of the vehicle as it was moving either forward or back. There was more than one maneuver, as far as a back and forth movement by the driver, prior to the shots being fired."

Tucker died at the scene. The investigators say the officer fired at least two shots, which left two bullet holes in Tucker's windshield. They searched Tucker's truck and found no weapons.

The Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office and the Salt Lake County Attorney's Office are investigating. They are speaking to witnesses, including a semi truck driver who says he watched the entire incident.

The officer who fired the shot is on routine administrative leave.

The shooting caused major traffic delays and backups on I-80 all afternoon. Around 4:30 p.m., eastbound I-80 reopened to traffic; both westbound lanes were reopened around 6:30 p.m.


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