Suspect hurt in deputy shooting dies

November 19, 2011 7:31:02 AM PST
The man accused of shooting a Wake County Sheriff's deputy near Wendell on Thursday has died.

Sheriff's Officials announced Zareski's passing late Friday night.

A department spokesperson said officers responded to a domestic disturbance call at 208 Gail Ridge Lane around 8 p.m. Thursday.

Brian Buckner told ABC1 he called 911 after his neighbor, 28-year-old Diane Zareski, knocked on his door covered in blood and said her husband beat her with liquor bottle.

He said when authorities arrived; it quickly turned into a standoff when 56-year-old Mark Brandon Zareski fired at officers.

"I seen the sheriff get hit, and then the sheriff, he got up and ran behind the tree, and I heard 'Officer down! Officer down!' 'Are you okay?' and then I heard 'Yeah, yeah, I'm hit, but I'm okay,'" witness Terry Tuggle told ABC11.

Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison told ABC11 that Deputy Jeff Scott Martin, 26, was in good condition. He was wearing a protective vest.

Officers fired back at Mark Zareski. He was taken to WakeMed in critical condition, where he died Friday. Diane Zareski was also taken to the hospital where she was listed in good condition Friday.

Martin was treated at the hospital and later released.

Buckner said he never had any problems with his neighbor before. He said the couple had a young daughter, who was not home at the time of the shooting.

Harrison said the incident highlights the danger officers often face when they respond to domestic disturbance calls.

"You never know what you're going to run into. When you come to one of these things, it can change from one to another just like this did. We came to a domestic, then it changed to an assault, and all of a sudden gunfire," the sheriff said.

Harrison said Martin has been with the department for four years.

The investigation continues.

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