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News Release

Monday, April 21, 2008

Media Relations

Suspect Injured while Struggling with Officers

Los Angeles: A prowler involved in a struggle with officers was injured when he failed to cooperate with them when stopped on the street.

On Friday, April 4, 2008, at around 1:30 a.m., 49 year-old Willie Johns was stopped by officers for a prowler complaint in the 100 block of West 76th Street. The officers tried to speak with Johns but he was unresponsive and appeared to be under the influence of an unknown substance. The officers, Dennis Gonsalves, one year with the Department, and Mario Leonidas, two years, seven months, with the Department each held onto the suspect’s hands to help him to his feet. Johns began to struggle and pulled away from Gonsalves’ grasp, which allowed Johns to swing his elbow back, striking the officer in the nose. In order to regain control, the officers brought the suspect to the ground and handcuffed him.

During the takedown of Johns, his face came in contact with the ground and was taken to a local hospital. The examination revealed that Johns had a fracture to the nasal cavity and a concussion. He was admitted into the hospital for treatment.

There were no officers injured during the incident

Force Investigation Division is handling the investigation.