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Huntington Beach woman in critical condition after being shot by officers in Laguna Beach

Huntington Beach woman in critical condition after being shot by officers in Laguna Beach
Laguna Beach police investigate the scene of an officer-involved shooting Sunday afternoon. (Photo by Joe Caputo)

A 36-year-old Huntington Beach woman was in critical condition Monday after being wounded the day before in a police shooting in Laguna Beach when she got out of an SUV holding a handgun, police said.

Laguna Beach police received two calls at about 2:40 p.m. about a woman threatening suicide. The second caller reported that a woman had a gun in the area of St. Ann's and Gaviota drives. The caller told police that the woman wanted to kill herself, police said.

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The suicidal woman told the caller that "something bad is going to happen," police Sgt. Jim Cota said.

Police said officers found the woman alone in a Lexus SUV in the 100 block of St. Ann's Drive at about 3 p.m. The SUV matched witnesses' description of her vehicle.

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The woman was initially uncooperative with officers and eventually got out of the vehicle with the gun in her hand, Cota said.

An officer fired his gun, wounding the woman in the upper torso, Cota said.

It isn't clear whether the woman pointed her weapon at officers before she was shot.

"She was swinging it wildly," Cota said.

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The officer rendered first aid before paramedics took the woman to Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo. The woman, who has not been identified, underwent surgery and was in critical condition, Cota said.

On Monday morning, the dead-end street overlooking the crashing waves on St. Ann's Beach where the SUV was parked a day earlier was quiet. The pavement was stained with what appeared to be dried blood.

The Police Department and the Orange County district attorney's office are investigating the case.

This is the Laguna Beach Police Department's first officer-involved shooting this year. Typically, it has about one per year, officials said.

In July, an officer fired at a car being pursued on Thalia Street as it appeared to be angling toward the officer, who was standing outside a patrol vehicle, police said. The driver was not hit.

UPDATES:

12:55 p.m. Feb. 12: This article was updated with additional details about the shooting victim, the scene, and additional statements from police.

This article was originally published Feb. 11

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