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News Release

Friday, March 23, 2012

Media Relations

Violent Armed Robbery Suspect NR12140kr

UPDATE
July 6, 2012

The officers involved in the officer-involved shooting have been identified as:  Police Officer III Gary Pugliese, 16 years and 7 months with the Department, Police Officer II Jacob Palacios, 4 years and 9 months with the Department, and Police Officer II Elder Chinchilla, 4 years and 7 months with the Department.

Points Gun at Police

Los Angeles:   A suspect, who robbed a tobacco shop and shot the store owner, was shot and killed by police officers after he pointed a handgun at them.  

On March 21, 2012, around 12:45 p.m., 30-year-old Garmik Kirakosian robbed a tobacco shop in the 8700 block of Glenoaks Boulevard, armed with a handgun.  As Foothill Area Officers were responding to the call for help they saw Kirakosian running from the store.  He got into a black Mercedes Benz with a female passenger inside and drove away.  He failed to yield to the officer’s lights and sirens and led them on a short pursuit before crashing into a pillar at Wheatland Avenue and Tuxford Street.

Kirakosian got out of the car and ran.  Officers immediately established a perimeter around the area.  While Officers were on the perimeter and making plans to conduct a search, Kirakosian went into a residence and changed his clothing in an attempt to disguise himself.

About 30-minutes into the perimeter officers saw Kirakosian walk out onto La Tuna Canyon Road west of Wheatland Avenue, armed with a gun.   An officer involved shooting occurred involving four officers.  One Foothill Area Patrol officer and two North Hollywood Area Gang Enforcement Detail officers fired their Department issued handguns.  One Foothill Area Patrol officer fired a Department issued bean bag shotgun.   A revolver was recovered at scene.
 
Los Angeles Fire Department personnel responded and pronounced Kirakosian dead at scene.  None of the officers were injured.  The store owner shot by Kirakosian was transported to a local hospital for treatment of a gunshot wound to the leg.  He was listed in stable condition.

It was later determined that the female passenger in the Mercedes, subsequently identified as
27-year-old Sofia Ashikian, was not a victim of a carjacking as she initially alleged, but was in fact an associate of Kirakosian.  Ashikian was booked for Robbery and is being held on $50,000 bail.  She was not injured during the incident.  

Force Investigation Division Detectives responded and are investigating the officer involved shooting and the Criminal Apprehension Team is conducting a joint investigation with Foothill Division Detectives for the armed robbery.  

The investigation will ultimately be reviewed by the Office of the Chief of Police, the Office of the Inspector General and Board of Police Commissioners for compliance with the Department’s use-of-force policy, which states that an officer’s use-of-force actions must be objectively reasonable.  

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to call the FID at 213-486-5230. During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (877-527-3247).  Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477). Tipsters may also contact Crime Stoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone.  All text messages should begin with the etters “LAPD.”  Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts.