A documented gang member on parole was in custody Thursday after he assaulted and injured a Long Beach police officer and took his gun, and then carjacked a vehicle and led authorities on a pursuit, officials said.
Damian Lopez-Sauzo, 27, of Long Beach was arrested late Wednesday night near Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Seventh Street, after being shot with less-lethal rounds, according to Long Beach police spokeswoman Arantxa Chavarria.
Lopez-Sauzo was treated at a hospital for minor injures sustained when a police dog helped SWAT officers take him into custody and was booked on suspicion of attempted murder of a police officer, assault with a deadly weapon against a police officer, resisting arrest, carjacking, being a felon in possession of a firearm, evading and parole violation, Chavarria said.
An officer went to the area of 10th Street and Stanley Avenue about 10 p.m. Wednesday on a “suspicious person and suspicious vehicle call,” Chavarria said.
“He made contact with a male adult subject and detained him while he investigated a possible stolen vehicle,” Chavarria said. “The officer ran the vehicle’s license plate and verified the vehicle had been reported stolen in Long Beach.”
The officer was violently assaulted when he attempted to take the suspect into custody, Chavarria said.
“During the assault, the suspect disarmed the officer of his duty weapon and fled the location on foot,” Chavarria said. “The officer sustained significant injuries and was transported to a local hospital for treatment and later released.”
Dispatchers received a report about 10:45 p.m. of a carjacking in the area of 16th Street and Stanton Place, according to Chavarria, who said the carjacking suspect description matched that of the man who assaulted the officer.
“Officers were able to locate the vehicle in the area of 16th Street and Alamitos Avenue, and a pursuit was initiated,” Chavarria said.
The pursuit ended in front of a home in the 700 block of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue, where an officer involved shooting occurred, according to Chavarria.
“Officers reassessed the situation and ordered the suspect to exit the vehicle,” but the man barricaded himself inside and a SWAT team responded to the scene, Chavarria said.
“Negotiation attempts were made to persuade him to surrender, and when he failed to comply, rubber baton rounds were deployed,” Chavarria said. “A K- 9 was also deployed, K-9 contact was made with the suspect and he was taken into custody.”
The suspect was not struck by the earlier gunfire, according to Chavarria.
The officer’s firearm was found inside the carjacked vehicle, she said.
Chavarria described Lopez-Sauzo, who was being held in the county jail without bail, as “a documented gang member on active parole for narcotics- related charges.”
–City News Service
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