The suspect who died last week after a standoff with police in Lincoln Heights that left three Los Angeles Police Department officers injured sustained a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head as well as injuries from police gunfire, LAPD Chief Michel Moore told the Police Commission Tuesday.
The coroner’s office, meanwhile, confirmed that Jonathan Magana, 32, died by suicide from a “gunshot wound of head” following last Wednesday’s confrontation in the 3800 block of North Broadway, between Lincoln Park Avenue and Mission Road.
Three officers were struck by gunfire during the confrontation and were treated at Los Angeles County+USC Medical Center. Two were released the next day. According to LAPD media relations, the third officer was released from the hospital Sunday. All are recovering.
One of the officers was shot in an arm, another was shot in a leg and the third was shot in the body, but body armor probably deflected the round, according to authorities.
Magana, who had a long criminal record, was a suspect in an extortion case and was under surveillance by LAPD officers when the standoff unfolded around 4 p.m. March 8. When officers lost sight of him, they requested backup from canine units, police said last week.
According to police, one of the dogs being used in the search alerted officers to a downstairs unit that appeared to be a converted living space still under construction. Officers surrounded the area and began calling for Magana to surrender. When he failed to comply, officers deployed “a chemical agent” in hopes of flushing him out, police said.
But Magana responded by opening fire at police, striking the three officers, while police returned fire as the suspect retreated back inside the downstairs unit. The shooting was believed to have occurred at about 6 p.m.
A SWAT team was requested as a standoff ensued, and a robot was ultimately deployed into the unit, where Magana was seen on camera and “appeared to be unresponsive.” SWAT officers entered the unit, determining that the suspect had been struck by gunfire. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene, police said.
Moore told the Police Commission on Tuesday that two handguns were recovered next to Magana — a 9mm Polymer80 semi-automatic ghost gun, and a 9mm Glock semiautomatic model 43x.
Police last week did not provide specifics on the extortion investigation, but said Magana was a parolee who was “a named suspect for an investigative report for extortion that occurred in Hollenbeck Division.” The division covers Lincoln Heights, along with areas such as Montecito Heights, El Sereno, Boyle Heights and Monterey Hills.
Moore on Tuesday said investigations were continuing into what sparked last week’s gunfire, as well as the criminal probe into Magana.
“This investigation is by no means done in regards to the criminal investigation nor the administrative investigation as to the actions of all personnel involved,” Moore told commissioners.
“The results of the administrative investigation will follow the established criteria mandated by this commission” and will include “the evaluation and analysis of the factors of the officers leading up to and of course their use of force in the aftermath of this (incident),” Moore added.