Tuesday, January 3, 2006
Suspect Shoots at Officers, Shoots Self
Los Angeles: A man suspected in domestic violence against his wife fired at two uniformed police officers New Year's Eve night around 10:20 PM. The officers recognized the black 1989 Pathfinder, in the 300 block of North Occidental Boulevard. When the officers attempted to detain the man, he came out of the car firing at the officers.
Both Rampart Area police officers, George Diego and Hiroshi Uhara, returned fire. The suspect continued to run west through the residential neighborhood. With extra officers on hand for New Year's Eve, the area was quickly cordoned off, and officers found the suspect within 30 minutes of the initial gunfire.
The 27-year-old man was unconscious with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. His gun and an expended casing were lying nearby. The suspect was taken to Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital in critical condition.
The incident stemmed from an earlier radio call by a woman on Commonwealth Avenue around 8 PM, who reported to officers that her husband had assaulted her and pointed a gun to her head. The officers took a crime report. The same officers happened upon the Pathfinder a couple hours later, not far from the woman's house.
Neither officer was injured by gunfire, though Officer Diego was slightly injured from striking his arm on an object during the exchange or the search for the suspect.
The shooting investigation should be able to confirm whether the suspect's head wound was self inflicted. The nature of the wound and the distance the suspect had traveled from the initial shooting made it improbable that the wound was a result of the officers' gunfire.
Officers Diego and Uhara are both 25 years old and have 3 years with the Department.
This incident was not related to celebratory gunfire for the New Year's Eve weekend.