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Man who was shot during struggle with police officer treated and released from hospital – police contemplating charges

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Posted: Tuesday, May 3, 2022. 7:02 pm CST.

By Benjamin Flowers: A man who was shot while allegedly trying to take a gun from a police officer has been treated and released from the Southern Regional Hospital (SRH).

Twenty-two-year-old Alex Ruiz was shot to the body on Saturday, April 30, at a vehicle checkpoint on the Southern Highway at the Monkey River Junction, allegedly during a struggle with PC #1899 Gerson Jones. He was admitted to the Southern Regional Hospital for treatment and was released on Monday, May 2.

Today, Head of Communications for the Office of the Commissioner of Police, Assistant Superintendent Fitzroy Yearwood, said that a criminal and internal investigation has been launched to find out what charges Ruiz will face, and what charges, if any, will be filed against PC Jones.

Yearwood said that the department immediately issued medico-legal forms to Ruiz, and a doctor will certify his injuries, to assist with determining PC Jones’s fate.

“The charges towards Mr. Ruiz will be determined by the officers that have taken over the report. Because we wouldn’t want charges to be levied by someone that is being investigated also,” Yearwood said.

The allegations are that Ruiz was one of three men in a vehicle stopped at the checkpoint because traffic officers smelled the strong scent of alcohol coming from the vehicle. The driver of the vehicle, Wilmer Ruiz, was asked to exit the vehicle to have a breathalyzer test performed on him, and Alex Ruiz and the other passenger Edwin Ruiz, followed.

Alex Ruiz allegedly began to advance towards PC Jones in a threatening manner, and Jones reportedly pulled out his service weapon and fired a warning shot, which did not stop Ruiz’s advancement. A struggle then ensued during which Ruiz was shot and injured.

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