Man accused of firing gun at school bus in Buena Park is dead after chase, police shooting
A male motorist who authorities say fired a gun at a school bus was killed in an officer-involved shooting, Buena Park police said Friday.
An officer had spotted the man shooting at the bus around 1:59 p.m. near Orangethorpe and Western avenues, police said.
Two people, the driver and a student, were aboard the bus, said Buena Park Police Capt. Frank Nunes. Neither was injured.
The officer tried to stop the man, who fled, leading the officer on a brief chase down Orangethorpe, Nunes said. The suspect drove through a locked fence onto Buena Park School District property and crashed into another vehicle.
At that point, two officers opened fire, police said. As of Friday night, investigators weren’t sure whether the suspect shot at officers, Nunes said.
The suspect, who has not been identified, was declared dead at the scene, the captain said. Officers said they recovered a handgun.
Investigators were in the early stages of their investigation Friday night and were still piecing together why the man shot at the school bus, Nunes said. It’s not known whether the incident was sparked by road rage, although investigators hadn’t ruled it out as a factor.
“This could have been much worse. Fortunately our officer was at the right place at the right time and intervened and possibly saved someone’s life,” the captain said.
The Orange County district attorney’s office will investigate the officer-involved shooting, Nunes said.
No officers and no civilians were injured during either shooting, he said.
The officer-involved shooting prompted a temporary lockdown of school district offices and Buena Park Middle School, which is about 200 yards from the parking lot where the shooting happened, Nunes said.
In a statement, Buena Park School District Supt. Ramon Miramontes said the district was fully cooperating with police and that “at no time were any students or staff in direct contact with the suspect.”
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