Man who shot at Maricopa Co. deputies dead after standoff in Guadalupe

Law enforcement situation in Guadalupe.
Law enforcement situation in Guadalupe.(Arizona's Family)
Published: May. 18, 2022 at 5:44 PM MST|Updated: May. 19, 2022 at 10:09 AM MST
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GUADALUPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- A man is dead after shooting at deputies during a standoff at a Guadalupe home on Wednesday afternoon. According to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO), 37-year-old Rolando Abel Rojas was acting erratically and shooting a gun near Priest Drive and Baseline Road around 1:30 p.m. Deputies say Rojas was going toward a school before he stopped on the front porch of a home.

MCSO says deputies then sent a drone to look at the home and Rojas overhead when he began shooting at it. Deputies, DPS troopers, and Tempe police officers then surrounded the house when Rojas pointed his gun and shot at deputies, investigators said. Deputies then returned fire, hitting Rojas, and he died at the scene. Sheriff’s officials say none of their deputies were hurt.

Antonio Chavarria watched this all unfold from the back alley of his home and took video on his cell phone. “Police already had their guns drawn, and they kept asking him to come out, and he wouldn’t come out,” said Chavarria.

He was worried about the school nearby. “I was afraid that kids would come out, and he would start firing at the kids,” Chavarria said. “Right at 3 o’clock, there’s a lot of kids walking around.”

Chavarria has watched violence happen far too often, far too close to home. it makes him emotional. “I was hoping he would walk out. I knew what was going to happen,” he said with tears in his eyes. “I knew he was dead. Paramedics came, they walk in, they walk out. There was nothing they could do.”

Chavarria has lived on this street for 50 years and said this incident is just another reminder of how things have changed over time that put so many at risk. “When I was younger, there used to be bars here. They took all the bars away because people were always getting killed, but it was always bottles, knives, sticks. You never heard of guns like you do nowadays,” said Chavarria.

“It was crazy, I didn’t expect it, there was nothing going on prior to that when it all started,” said another neighbor who didn’t want to be identified. “It was chaos, it was scary. The kids were on lockdown, they were probably freaking out.”

The shooting is the 24th officer-involved shooting in Maricopa County this year. According to Arizona’s Family count, it’s the 37th officer-involved shooting statewide.