Riverton low-speed chase ends in fatal police shooting

The chase began in Sandy after authorities responded to a suspected vehicle burglary.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Police investigate a shooting at Fashion Place Mall, on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2024.

Authorities fatally shot a man after a low-speed chase from Sandy to Riverton on Friday, a Riverton police spokesperson said.

Sandy police responded to a suspected vehicle burglary at about 5:40 a.m. Friday morning, Riverton public information officer Josh Lee said during a Friday news conference. Police pursued the suspect across the valley to Riverton, and deployed spike strips on the road to stop the vehicle, Lee said.

The vehicle was stopped near 2200 West and 13800 South, according to Fox 13. The driver then presented a firearm to police, Lee said, and officers from Riverton, Herriman and Sandy then fired at the driver.

The driver was pronounced dead, and police later identified him as 40-year-old Joshua Watson, according to Fox 13. Lee did not specify if Watson fired at the officers or how many shots were fired by police.

No officers were injured in the shooting, Lee said, although Watson did attempt to ram police vehicles during the chase.

The shooting is under investigation by the Salt Lake City police protocol team. The shooting marked the fourth police shooting in Utah so far this year, according to a database maintained by The Salt Lake Tribune.