On December 31, 2013 at approximately 2:00 pm, Phoenix Police Officers responded to an armed robbery at the IHOP restaurant located near 44th Street and Oak. Officer Scott Sefranka subsequently spotted the suspects fleeing the scene on Thomas Road before they crashed into another vehicle at 56th Street. Officer Sefranka was forced to take action and began fighting with the suspect, Roger Sharp. Phillip Grigg, the driver of the vehicle which was hit, and a member of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Posse, exited his vehicle and tried to assist officer Sefranka.
During the struggle, both Officer Sefranka and Mr. Grigg were shot after Roger Sharp gained control of Officer Sefranka’s service weapon, and fled on foot into the neighborhood south of the scene. Thanks to a massive and collaborative effort by patrol officers, SAU/SWAT officers, and Canine assets of both the Phoenix and Scottsdale Police Departments, with the support of the Phoenix Police Department Air Unit, Roger Sharp and his accomplice David Murray were taken into custody within hours of the shooting.
Both Officer Sefranka and Mr. Grigg were critically injured during this incident and while Officer Sefranka was released from the hospital within a couple of weeks of the shooting, Mr. Grigg remained hospitalized for approximately six months. Officer Sefranka has returned to work, but has not been released to full duty due to his injuries.
Roger Sharp plead guilty to all charges related to this incident and was sentenced on Friday, February 27, 2015, by the Honorable Judge Joseph Kreamer, to 66.5 years in prison for his actions that day.
In addition to numerous Phoenix Police Officers and Firefighters who attended the hearing, support for Officer Sefranka in the form of impact statements was provided by both friends and fellow Phoenix Police Officers as well as PLEA Secretary Frank Marino and Phoenix Police Chief Joe Yahner.
PLEA appreciates the community support which was shown to both Officer Sefranka and Mr. Grigg throughout this horrible and traumatizing ordeal and we are glad to see that justice was finally served.