A man suspected of assaulting a woman in South Los Angeles was shot by LAPD officers after leading them on a two-hour car chase to El Monte.
The suspect, whose name has not been released, was wounded during the second of two shootings that happened in the San Gabriel Valley city. LAPD Officer Matt Ludwig said the man was armed with a gun.
Ludwig said two officers responded around 1 a.m. to a domestic violence call in the 9300 block of Firth Boulevard, near 92nd Street, in South Los Angeles.
The two officers were speaking with the female victim when they noticed the man, who was suspected of assaulting her, driving away in a white Toyota minivan.
"They attempted to do a traffic stop, but he did not stop and a pursuit started," Ludwig said. The chase happened at low speeds, he said.
"At some point, during the pursuit, he called CHP and notified them that he was armed," Ludwig said of the suspect.
Once in El Monte, the man stopped the minivan at the intersection of Cogwell Road and Elliot Avenue and got out. Officers opened fire.
LAPD Lt. John Jenal said it was unclear what exactly happened during that shooting, but he said there was no initial evidence to suggest that the man had been struck by the gunfire before getting back in his vehicle and driving off.
Ludwig said officers used a spike strip to disable and stop the suspect’s car, but the man continued driving with flat tires. Finally the minivan came to rest about half a mile away from the scene of the first shooting, at Mountain View Road and Valley Boulevard.
The man got out of the vehicle holding a blanket, dropping it at one point and brandishing a gun, according to Jenal and Ludwig. That’s when officers fired again.
The suspect was taken to a hospital, where he remains in critical condition, Ludwig said.
Jenal called the incident “very complex” and said that the investigations into both officer-involved shootings – routine after such shootings -- were in their preliminary stages.
Police said no officers were injured.