A man is dead after a deputy-involved shooting on Interstate 10 in Whitewater Friday morning. The investigation led to a shutdown that caused a massive traffic on the highway and heading into Palm Springs.
The incident started at around 8:45 a.m. near Whitewater Canyon Road and Whitewater Cutoff. Authorities said a Riverside County Sheriff's deputy shot and killed a man who charged at them with a tire iron.
Police were seen struggling with someone in the center divide, according to witnesses.
Sgt. Lionel Murphy told reporters at the scene that the deputy responded to the area on a report that a man was throwing rocks at vehicles, and the deputy saw the suspect smashing the window of a parked car with a tire iron.
The deputy ordered the man to drop the tire iron, but he instead
walked toward I-10 and onto the interstate, Murphy said.
The deputy again ordered the man to drop the tire iron on the interstate, but the man instead charged the deputy, wielding the tire iron, Murphy said. The deputy then fired an undisclosed number of gunshots at the man, striking him, the sergeant said.
The deputy, whose name was withheld, wasn't hurt, Murphy said
The investigation into the shooting lasted several hours, with the westbound side of the I-10 shut down throughout the process.
Traffic was heavily impacted, with bumper to bumper traffic for several hours on the I-10.
All lanes were back open by 4:40 p.m., however, expect traffic delays to continue for a bit longer due to the back-up.
TRAFFIC UPDATE: All lanes have been opened on I-10 westbound following a major traffic delay caused by a critical incident at Whitewater. Drive safely!— City of Palm Springs (@CityofPS) April 9, 2021
Stay with News Channel 3 for updates.