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Man shot, killed by officers was also wanted by police

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Posted at 4:56 PM, Mar 20, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-21 01:26:42-04

SALT LAKE CITY - One man is dead after firing at JCAT officers who were in the area trying to serve an arrest warrant on a parole fugitive in Salt Lake City on Tuesday.

Joint Criminal Apprehension Team agents were in the area of 1149 South Foulger Avenue in Salt Lake City Tuesday at around 4 p.m. trying to serve an arrest warrant on ex-convict James Anton Mciff when another man, 37-year-old Ronnie Ontiveros, opened fire.

Officers returned fire, firing several dozen rounds at Ontiveros, hitting him at least twice.

"And then it sounded like firecrackers and we looked outside and there was a guy on the ground," said neighbor Lindsay.

Ontiveros was rushed to the hospital where he later died.

Meanwhile, JCAT officers were involved in a standoff with Mciff, who refused to leave his home and even fired at officers.

"They dealt with a different individual who fired at least one round at the officers from a handgun and more than one JCAT officer returned fire," said Salt Lake City Police Sgt. Shawn Josephson.

Mciff was eventually arrested, along with two other suspects, and taken back to prison for violating his parole.

Ontiveros, also known as Ponchito, had a long criminal history and was listed on the Metro Gang Unit's top ten most wanted list.

Although he is also wanted by police, Ontiveros had nothing to do with the search warrant being served on Tuesday. Police say they didn't even know he was in the area.

Investigators aren't sure why Ontiveros opened fire, but some people suspect that he believed officers were coming for him.

"He's deceased and so we don't know exactly what it was that prompted him to take that action," Josephson said.

The Salt Lake District Attorney's Office and Salt Lake City Police are now conducting independent investigations to determine whether the shooting of Ontiveros was justified.

Related story:
One dead, three in custody after police shooting in SLC