Medical Staff Recognized by Chief of Police for Life Saving Care Given to Wounded Officer

January 5, 2002

Recognition Award Presentation Ceremony
Harbor UCLA Medical Center, 1000 West Carson Street, Torrance (Conference Room, Building One, East-Enter through Vermont Ave.)
Tuesday, January 8, 2002, at 1:30 p.m.

Wilmington: On October 10, 2001, while assigned to Harbor Area, Officers Angel Guerra and Beth Merkovsky detained a parolee at large involved in trafficking narcotics. During the officers’ investigation the parolee produced a handgun and fired several rounds at the officers. During the ensuing gun battle, Officer Guerra sustained several life threatening gunshot wounds to his upper body and face and Officer Merkovsky sustained a lesser grazing wound to her arm. The suspect sustained a gunshot wound and was captured a short distance from the scene.
Officer Guerra was transported to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center where Dr. Stanley R. Klein and the Emergency Services Staff treated him. As a result of the professional critical care and follow up care given by Dr. Klein and his staff, Officer Guerra is recovering from his wounds and expected to return to full duty. Officer Merkovsky’s injuries were slight and treatment was not necessary at UCLA Medical Center. Officer Merkovsky returned to duty almost immediately.
The Los Angeles Police Department will forever be grateful for the care of Officer Guerra under extraordinary circumstances. The Chief of Police has recognized Doctor Klein and the Emergency Room Services Staff for their commitment and dedication to the people of the City of Los Angeles and for their critical care of Officer Guerra in saving his life. Both officers will be present during the award ceremony to give their personal appreciation.
For further information, contact Sergeant Michael Apodaca, Los Angeles Police Department’s Wellness Coordinator, at 213-359-1179. Additionally, Ms. Julie Rees, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, may be reached at 310-222-2106 to answer questions regarding Doctor Klein or his staff.
This media advisory was prepared by Public Information Officer Jason Lee, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.