Los Angeles police Thursday named the officer who fatally shot a suspect in Boyle Heights, and said the officer had been with the department for at least five years.
Officer Eden Medina fatally shot Omar Gonzalez, 36, of Los Angeles, after the suspect fought with officers and later produced a handgun, police said.
The shooting in the 1200 block of Atwood Place happened about 7:45 p.m. July 28 following a vehicle chase, the Los Angeles Police Department reported.
The pursuit began after Gang Enforcement Detail officers from the LAPD’s Hollenbeck Station attempted to stop a possible stolen Nissan Altima east of downtown Los Angeles.
“The driver failed to pull over and fled into a nearby residential neighborhood,” according to a police statement.
The officers gave chase and the Nissan driver stopped at the end of a cul-de-sac on Atwood Street, at which time a passenger got out and ran to the driveway of a home, police said.
“Alert residents attempted to stop the fleeing suspect when officers arrived and attempted to take him into custody,” police said.
“The suspect fought with the officers, causing them to fall to the ground and the struggle continued. The suspect was then seen armed with a loaded .25-caliber semi-automatic handgun.”
Medina subsequently fired two rounds striking Gonzalez, police said.
An ambulance was called and Gonzalez was taken to a hospital, where he died, according to the LAPD.
The driver of the vehicle, later identified as Annel Martinez, 26, of Los Angeles, was also taken into custody.
No officers were injured.
The shooting was being investigated by the LAPD’s Use of Force Division, the Justice System Integrity Division of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and the LAPD Inspector General’s office.
–City News Service