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Police: Officer wounded, gunman shot in Mesquite

Police: Officer wounded, gunman shot in Mesquite

CREATED Mar 21, 2013

MESQUITE, Nev. (AP) -- Police say a patrol officer and a gunman are wounded after a traffic stop shootout in the Nevada resort city of Mesquite.

Mesquite Police Officer Jeffrey Smith says the officer was wounded in the leg by a man who stepped from a blue 1996 Geo Metro with Utah license plates and fired one shot during a traffic stop a little before 8 a.m. Thursday.

Smith says the gunman was wounded by return fire during the encounter on Sandhill Boulevard near Old Mill Road. That's just off Interstate 15 at one of Mesquite's main crossroads.

The officer was taken to Mesa View Regional Hospital in Mesquite. Smith says he's in good condition.

The officer's name is Craig Empey. The detective he was with is Gary Erikson. The name of the man who shot the officer has not been released.

The gunman was flown by medical helicopter about 75 miles to University Medical Center in Las Vegas.

 A woman who was a passenger in the car was taken in by police for questioning.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department will be handling the investigation into the shooting.

Action News contributed to this report.