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Pima sheriff's deputy in critical condition after being found with gunshot wound on South Side

A Pima County sheriff's deputy remains in critical condition after surviving a gun shot to the head and being found Thursday afternoon near a church on Tucson's South Side, authorities said.

"The investigation is ongoing, and more information will be released as it becomes available," Deputy Marissa Hernandez, a PCSD spokewoman, said Friday. 

Few details have been released about the incident, but during a press conference Thursday, Sheriff Chris Nanos said that the on-duty deputy was found in a parking lot near a church at the 5100 block of South Julian Drive around 3:30 p.m. after the communications center realized they had an open mike, and could not reach the deputy.

"We sent units to his location, and that's where he was found," Nanos said.

"We received a call of an officer down, and deputies responded," Nanos said. "They found the deputy with his vehicle, with a gunshot wound to the head. He's still with us, he's at the hospital and he's been taken to surgery." 

The deputy was transported to Banner University Medical Center, and his wife and other family members were notified.

Nanos added that while the agency deployed a helicopter and additional deputies to search the area, there are no suspects in the incident.

"We do not believe there's a threat to the community at this time, but we're still having a lot of work to do to process the scene and conduct interviews," he said. Nanos said Thursday that the incident remains a "sensitive subject" and that the family had just learned of the deputy's injuries.

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Toward the end of the press conference, visibly shaken sheriff said that the deputy is a "family member of ours," and he said the department will investigate the incident, "at whatever pace is necessary, and as thoroughly and as completely as we can."

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Dylan Smith/TucsonSentinel.com

Nanos in 2015, as he was readying to take over the Pima County Sheriff's Department for the first time.