Officer Accidentally Fires Weapon

July 31, 2006

Los Angeles: A Los Angeles police officer accidentally fired his gun Friday night when he stumbled on steps while chasing a suspect.

On July 28, 2006, around 8:15 p.m., three officers working a Gang Enforcement Detail in Northeast Area were patrolling an active gang area when they saw a possible vandalism suspect in the alley behind 3435 North Figueroa Street. The suspect spotted the police and ran between nearby houses. The location was on a hillside and had stairs that descended to homes on the street below. As officers chased the suspect down the stairs, Officer Juan Chavez, 33, who had unholstered his weapon, stumbled on the steps and accidentally fired a single round.

There were no injuries as a result of the accidental discharge. The juvenile suspect was detained and released after the investigation revealed there was no evidence of vandalism.

Force Investigation Division is handling the investigation.

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