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SWAT officer shot in head during San Gabriel operation dies

A Pomona police SWAT officer shot in the back of the head while serving a search warrant in San Gabriel has died, authorities said.

"It is with a heavy heart that we must deliver the news that early this morning Pomona police SWAT Officer Shaun Diamond had succumbed to his injuries," the Pomona Police Department said in a statement Wednesday.

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Diamond, 45, was hospitalized early Tuesday at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena after authorities said he was shot by 36-year-old David Martinez during a predawn search warrant operation that was part of a investigation into a motorcycle gang.

In the predawn hours Wednesday, dozens of officers escorted Diamond's body from the hospital to the Los Angeles County coroner's office near downtown Los Angeles.

Martinez, who remains in custody, is due in court Thursday.

Diamond was a 16-year law enforcement veteran, having also served with the LAPD and Montebello police. He joined the Pomona police in 2006 and was a member of the SWAT team since 2008.

His mother, Joy Diamond, told KTLA that he was steady, reliable and kind-hearted despite cutting an imposing figure.

He also worked in police outreach efforts at Special Olympics events and participated in SWAT demonstrations for schoolchildren.

"He was supposed to fix my car today. I can't imagine life, I can't image Christmas or Thanksgiving...." she said. "We're lucky to have him as long as we did, and I have to hang on to that."

Diamond is the fourth law enforcement officer in California to be killed in the line of duty in less than a week. Two sheriff's deputies from Sacramento and Placer counties were killed Friday during a gunman's rampage through Northern California.

On Tuesday, Ventura County Sheriff's Deputy Eugene Kostiuchenko was killed on the 101 Freeway when he was struck by a motorist who authorities said was driving while intoxicated. The suspect fled the scene but was later arrested, officials said.

For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA. She can be reached at veronica.rocha@latimes.com

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