TO Los Angeles County SheriffThe officer was shot in the head Saturday night while sitting in his patrol car outside the Palmdale station, according to police sources.
The officer was found “in medical distress” inside his vehicle at the intersection of Avenue Q and Sierra Highway around 6 p.m., authorities said. He was later rushed to a Lancaster hospital in a critical condition.
The shooting is being treated as a crime, a department official said. Authorities said any witnesses should contact homicide detectives.
It is unclear what circumstances led to the shooting and authorities have not released any information about possible suspects.
Nearby security video shared with The Times shows a black car pulling up behind the officer’s patrol car and stopping. Seconds later, the black car pulls a little further, stops on the driver’s side of the patrol car, and stops again.
Then the black car speeds away. The officer’s vehicle moves forward a foot or two and stops moving.
Sources say investigators are working to determine what happened between the two vehicles, if anything.
Derek Hsieh, executive director of the Association. for Los Angeles sheriff’s deputies union, called the shooting an “ambush” and said it has sparked anger and sadness in the law enforcement community.
“It’s a scandal,” he said. “An ambush is a targeted attack on law enforcement and it sends a really clear message.”
He confirmed that the shot deputy is represented by the union and has several relatives in law enforcement. On Saturday night, he said other law enforcement officers had already begun reaching out in solidarity.
“I have received calls of support from other law enforcement agencies and from an elected official who offered to use his own personal money if an award was necessary,” Hsieh said.
Supervisor Janice Hahn called the shooting “horrible and senseless” and said she had contacted Sheriff Robert Luna.
“Tonight I’m praying for him, his friends, fellow @PalmdaleSheriff officers and especially his loved ones,” she wrote Saturday night on a post on Xformerly known as Twitter.