Published On: Mon, Oct 1st, 2012

Jodon Romero, identified as Arizona man who committed suicide, accidentally broadcast on Fox

A man who stole a car at gunpoint, shot at Phoenix police officers and then led them on a chase that ended with his suicide broadcast on Fox was identified as a wanted felon with a long criminal history.

Jodon F. Romero, age 33, was wanted for violating his parole for a weapons conviction and had numerous other violent crimes in his background, police spokesman Sgt. Tommy Thompson said.

West of Phoenix the long pursuit by police on Friday ended with Romero pulling off the highway, running as an officer fire a shot. Romero then walked off the dirt road, put a gun to his head and killed himself, Thompson recounted.

Fox News was covering the chase that began about midday Friday using a live helicopter shot from Phoenix affiliate KSAZ-TV. Anchor Shepard Smith told viewers that the video was supposed to be on a delay so it could be cut off if something went awry.

That did not happen and the video broadcast the man’s suicide live on air.

‘‘We really messed up, and we’re all very sorry,’’ Smith said minutes after the suicide aired. Fox apologized for showing the violence on air. KSAZ itself was not airing the chase.

(more details below)

Arizona Department of Corrections

Romero stole a Dodge Caliber sedan at gunpoint from a nearby restaurant parking lot.

Police spotted the car and gave chase, but pulled back when Romero began running red lights and endangering the public, Thompson said. Instead, unmarked cars and a police helicopter began following him at a distance.

Romero drove into an industrial area and spotted two marked police units, with one officer standing beside one car talking with another officer.

He veered into their lane and opened fire, missing the officers but hitting one patrol car.

He then got onto Interstate 10, heading west toward California at speeds in excess of 100 mph.

The police helicopter and unmarked police vehicles followed at a distance, and the Fox helicopter began its coverage.

Romero fired at the police helicopter during the chase, but didn’t hit it, Thompson said.

About 75 miles west of Phoenix he got off the interstate and drove off into the surrounding desert.

He eventually stopped, got out of the car and began walking down a dirt road. That’s when an officer fired one shot at him.

Although Thompson said it appeared the shot missed, television footage shows Romero stumbling and falling down and appearing to feel his torso before walking into some brush.

That’s when he shot himself in the head.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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  1. Fox airs suicide of carjacker evading police live VIDEO - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] UPDATE: The man has been identified by police as Jodon Romero – read more details here […]

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