Six-month-old baby fighting for his life after man shoots him multiple times during police standoff

SURPRISE, AZ - Arizona police officers burst into a house Friday to rescue a six-month-old who had been shot multiple times after the child's father, 51-year-old Todd Christopher Marchetti, took the infant and its mother hostage, according to a police statement.

Marchetti, police said, ultimately died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Surprise Police Department officers responded to the home at 11:30 a.m. Friday after receiving a 911 call about a woman and child who had been taken captive around 3:00 a.m. The woman eventually managed to escape and ran to a nearby group of construction workers, who called 911. The child was still inside.

When police arrived at the home, they heard "multiple rounds of gunfire," and one of the officers fired a round in response, according to the statement.

Officers "quickly worked to force entry and rescue the infant, who sustained multiple gunshot wounds." The critically injured infant was airlifted to a nearby hospital, where he was stabilized, police said.

The infant's mother was treated for minor injuries at the scene and taken to the hospital to be with her boy, according to police.

“When a call came in to 911 our officers were ready to put themselves in that line of fire that in the danger for the betterment of that young child. Right now, that child is clinging to life, that child is in surgery, that child has an opportunity to recover and that is what our officers are focused on right now is that we provided that child the opportunity to recover,” said Surprise Police Sgt. Rick Hernandez.

Arizona police officers from Surprise, Goodyear, and Phoenix attempted to negotiate a "peaceful resolution" to the standoff, according to the statement from the Surprise Police Department.

But shortly after 3:00 p.m., a fire started inside the house while the suspect, later identified as Todd Christopher Marchetti, 51, was still inside.

"Fire crews could not tend to the fire due to the possible threat and sounds of gunfire coming from inside the house," Surprise police said. “Firefighters don’t wear bulletproof vests. Firefighters don’t have weapons so they are vulnerable on these kinds of situations so it’s imperative that law enforcement stabilize that scene in such a way that it’s safe to address the fire,” said Andy Anderson, a former assistant Phoenix Police chief.

Firefighters used two ladder trucks to spray the house with water and water down the house next door to keep the flames from spreading. By 4:30 p.m., the fire appeared to have been put out, but firefighters were still mopping up hot spots. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

In a subsequent statement, Surprise police said officers entered the residence after flames died down and it was safe to do so. Marchetti was found dead from what police believe was a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The exact cause of death will be determined by a medical examiner, the police department said. The gunfire, blaze, and police response were under investigation.

A GoFundMe has been made to help the mother and baby as they recover during this time, identifying the mother as Allie and the infant as Jaxson. The campaign also states that the incident was related to domestic violence. 
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