Police officers stand guard near a crime scene where three Los Angeles police officers were shot, Wednesday, March 8, 2023, in Los Angeles. Police said the officers were hospitalized and in stable condition. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)
(AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Three Los Angeles police officers were shot and wounded Wednesday evening in a confrontation with a wanted parolee who was found dead hours later after a standoff, police said.
The three officers, all senior officers and members of a Los Angeles Police Department’s K-9 dog-handling unit, were hospitalized in stable condition after the shooting that occurred in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood near downtown.
The three were alert and Mayor Karen Bass said she had a conversation with two of them at the hospital and they asked her about colleagues who were looking for the suspect.
“They weren’t concerned about themselves,” she said at a news conference.
“Our hearts go out to them for their speedy recovery and also for the trauma that their families are facing right now,” Bass said.
Officers were looking for a parolee at large at around 4 p.m. but when they found him he was barricaded in a shed and refused to obey commands to surrender, the department said.
K-9 officers were called in to help and the officers used what police described as a gas “chemical agent” in another effort to force the man to surrender.
“Unfortunately, that suspect responded to that chemical agent by opening the shed and opening fire on the officers,” hitting three of them, Los Angeles Police Cmdr. Stacy Spell said.
The police department issued a citywide tactical alert, meaning officers from across the city are available to respond to the scene if needed. Officers, including SWAT team members, flooded into the area and sealed it off.
SWAT robots were sent in to keep an eye on the suspect and one fired gas into the shed.
The situation ended shortly before 9 p.m. and police later said the suspect was found and pronounced dead at the scene.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether he was shot by police or killed himself.
The lengthy time of the standoff shows the officers were “taking their time to try to de-escalate this and more importantly, resolve this peacefully,” Los Angeles Police Assistant Chief Al Labrada said. “And unfortunately, behavior of this individual did not result in that. A very deadly situation.”