Riverside, Calif. – One officer is dead, another in critical condition and a third has minor injuries after a shootout Monday that also killed the gunman, authorities said. Dozens of gunshots were fired near Interstate 215 in Riverside, east of Los Angeles.
CHP Assistant Chief Scott Parker told reporters at a Monday night news conference an officer who pulled over a white GMC pickup truck was filling out impound paperwork when the driver pulled a rifle of unknown caliber from the truck and began firing.
The officer was wounded but managed to call for help. He was airlifted to a hospital but succumbed to his wounds.
Authorities said CHP officers, Riverside police and sheriff’s deputies arrived and continued trading gunfire, with the suspect taking cover in the front of the pickup. Two other CHP officers were hit before the gunman was killed.
Police withheld the shooter’s name and said they don’t have a motive for the attack. It wasn’t clear why the car was stopped.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom extended his condolences via Twitter:
Riverside Police Chief Sergio Diaz told reporters officers’ body cam video and civilian eyewitness accounts would be part of the investigation of the shooting. “It was a long and horrific gun battle,” he said.
Video from the scene shows bullet holes in the front windows of two patrol cars and large holes blown in their back windows. What appeared to be an assault-style rifle was on the ground.
Two civilians were hurt – one was in another car and hit by flying glass that caused minor injuries, authorities said. The other civilian’s injuries also were minor.
Jennifer Moctezuma, 31, of Moreno Valley told the Los Angeles Times that she was driving home with her 6-year-old twins when a bullet flew through her front windshield.
Charles Childress, 56, a retired Marine from Moreno Valley, was in the car behind her.
He led the family as they crawled to the bottom of a bridge to hide and none were harmed, the Times reported.
“He’s my hero,” Moctezuma said.