Arizona Reservation Bans Dances After Tribal Officer and Bystander Shot and Killed at Party

An Arizona reservation has banned dances after a rookie tribal officer and a resident were killed when gunfire erupted at a gathering, police said.

Joshua Briese, 23, had been sworn in less than a year ago and was still receiving field training, authorities said. He and another officer responded at 2 a.m. Saturday to noise complaints about a large crowd, police said.

After they arrived, shots rang out. Briese and a partygoer, who was not identified, were fatally wounded, according to the FBI, which is assisting the investigation. The other officer who was wounded is in serious condition, police said.

“Our hearts and prayers are with these police officers, their families, and everyone impacted by this tragic incident,” the department said.

Four other residents were injured and are being treated at hospitals, authorities said.

Two suspects, one an adult male and the other a juvenile male, have been arrested in connection with the shootings and are in custody and receiving medical care, the FBI said. The suspects were not identified.

Gale River Indian Community Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis signed the order barring dances on Saturday afternoon, and offered his condolences to the victims.

“I know I speak for our entire community when I say that we grieve for our fallen and injured police officers and every community member touched by such tragic violence. Nothing cuts deeper than a life cut short. We will pray for our officers and their families, and for every community member, every loved one, and every family impacted by what happened this morning,” he said in a statement.

Briese’s father was also killed in the line of duty, police said. David Briese, a deputy with Montana’s Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Office, was killed in 2006 while responding to the scene of a traffic accident, authorities said.

The son became a law enforcement officer to honor his fallen father, friends said.

The moratorium on dances is designed to prevent further violence at large community gatherings, officials said.

Last year, local rules were changed to require that four chaperones be present during dances where more than 50 people were present, authorities said. Despite that change, the community “continues to experience criminal activity,” the moratorium said.

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