LAPD Deputy Chief Bill Scott said the officer was neither wearing a uniform nor in a marked police vehicle when the shooter opened fire in the area of Coliseum Street and Edgehill Drive about 6:30 a.m.
"They drove up and shot at the officer's car," Scott said. "The suspect was in a Prius."
The officer's vehicle was struck at least five times and the officer did not return fire. The officer was not injured in the shooting, Scott said.
"We don't know if they knew it was a police officer," he said.
Scott said officers conducting such surveillance are good at blending in and not giving up signs they are law enforcement.