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UPDATE: RACINE, Wis. — The man accused of shooting two Racine police officers during a domestic dispute Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023, is facing multiple felonies that could land him in prison for the rest of his life.

Daniel Suarez, 26, of Racine, was charged Fri., Jan. 20, 2023, with nine felonies—four counts of first-degree intentional attempted homicide, four counts of intentionally pointing a firearm at a police officer, and failure to comply with an officer’s attempt to take a person into custody. He was also charged with two misdemeanor counts of bail jumping and one misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct.

If convicted of all charges, Suarez faces the rest of his life—up to 278 years—or $71,000 in fines.  

Racine Police Chief Maurice Robinson said during a press conference on Wed., Jan. 18, the incident occurred at around 10:51 p.m. when officers were called to a residence in response to a civil dispute between a man and woman.

Sergeant William Burinda and Officer Benjamin Eiden both sustained non-life-threatening injuries. 

“No chief wants to stand here at a podium like this and have to have a conversation regarding his officers being fired upon and injured,” Robinson said. “I’m not happy. I’m happy that they’re going to be okay. But the event that brings us here gives me a great deal of displeasure.”

What happened

According to the criminal complaint, Suarez stepped outside of the house and fired several shots into the air before going back inside.

Upon arrival, officers were advised by the female that the subject had access to weapons and that he had indeed fired into the air. The officers established a perimeter around the residence and attempted to make contact with Suarez, the complaint continues. 

“Our officers made several attempts to establish contact with the subject including voice commands at the door, by telephone, and by using the squad public address system,” Robinson said.

However, at approximately 12:51 a.m. Suarez fired multiple shots out the window with what appeared to be a shotgun, hitting two officers, the complaint continues. Sergeant Burinda sustained a shoulder injury and Officer Eiden sustained facial injuries.

The chief stated that the injuries were believed to be the result of birdshot pellets. The officers stayed on the scene despite their injuries.

According to the criminal complaint, Suarez later reappeared at the back of the house, armed, and surrendered to the officers at around 2:22 a.m. He was taken into custody with superficial injuries. He was transported to a local hospital for medical evaluation and treatment before being transferred to the Racine County Jail.

The chief said that he has not yet seen any body-worn camera footage or spoken with the officers about the incident.

“So in finishing, these officers worked through two waves of COVID, civil unrest, personnel shortages, canceled off days, and forced overtime without a contract for two years,” Robinson said. “They show up every day to protect the citizens here. And I can’t thank them enough for their dedication and their perseverance.”

Suarez was assigned a $250,000 cash bond and ordered to not have any contact with the woman at all and to not possess or consume any alcohol or controlled substances. He will next be in court Jan. 25 for his preliminary hearing.

ORIGINAL STORY:

RACINE, Wis. — Two Racine Police officers suffered non-life-threatening injuries after being shot while responding to a domestic abuse call.

Police investigate the scene Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2023, where two Racine police officers were shot and wounded overnight while responding to a domestic disturbance call. Their injuries are said to be non-life threatening. / Mark Hertzberg – For Racine County Eye

Officers were called to a report of a man with a gun that had been discharged at 10:46 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 17, in the 2900 block of Gillen Street, according to Sgt. Kristi Wilcox, spokesperson for the Racine Police Department.

When officers arrived on the scene, they met a woman outside who said her husband was still inside with their two children. Police tried to talk to the man for about an hour. But then he fired several rounds, striking two of the officers.

The man eventually came out of the home, uninjured. But he went to the hospital to make sure he was not injured.

Charges are pending. The woman and her children are safe.


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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.