Suspect dies after police pursuit, shootings near Zion

The man suffered what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot, police said.

(Thor Fiedler | FOX 13) On Oct. 6, 2021, in the backyard of this Rockville house, police said they found a man who led them on a pursuit through Washington County and opened fire on several vehicles.

A 55-year-old man whom Washington County authorities have said exchanged gunfire with officers as he led police on an Oct. 6 pursuit has died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, officials announced Monday.

Shannon Alan Griffin died Saturday, according to a Washington County Sheriff’s Office news release. Griffin was accused of opening fire at several vehicles on state Route 9 as he neared Rockville during the police pursuit. The town sits a few miles southwest of Zion National Park’s south entrance.

Before the pursuit, Griffin was accused of brandishing a weapon at a father and daughter in Hurricane. Police later spotted Griffin’s vehicle and tried to stop it, but Griffin drove off, police said, racing east through several towns on state Route 9 as officers followed.

One Springdale officer and two Hurricane officers opened fire at Griffin during the pursuit, according to the Washington County Critical Incident Task Force.

The first police shooting happened as authorities deployed a tire-deflation device to stop Griffin’s vehicle, the task force said in a news release. The second happened in Rockville, after police said Griffin stopped his vehicle, stepped out and “exchanged gunfire” with authorities before running into a neighborhood, according to the release.

As law enforcement searched for Griffin, a single gunshot was reportedly heard. Authorities found him in a backyard with what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was hospitalized in critical condition before he died.

Per protocol, one officer from Springdale-Zion Canyon Police and two officers from the Hurricane Police Department were placed on paid administrative leave pending a review of their use of force.