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One man is dead and a Redding police officer is shot after a S. Market Street traffic stop led to a physical struggle and shooting late this morning, Shasta County Sheriff’s Sgt. Dave Kent said today.
The man was in a teal Pontiac Grand Am pulled over at S. Market Street and Elmwood Street, near the Good News Rescue Mission, Kent said.
“There were multiple subjects that were in the vehicle and, evidently, the suspect started fighting with the officer; (they had) a struggle,” he said. “The suspect had a gun and fired at least one shot at the officer while they were stuggling.”
The sergeant did not know how many shots were fired. However, the man was shot and died, he said. Whether he was shot by another officer or the injured officer is still being investigated, Kent said.
The officer suffered a non-life-threatening shot to an extremity, Kent said, and thought the wound was to the officer’s arm.
Neither the suspect’s name and city of residence nor the officer’s name were being released yet, Kent said at 3:30 today. However, the man killed was not a juvenile, he said.
Others in the suspect’s car had been detained and were being questioned, Kent said.
Today at a late afternoon press conference, Kent confirmed that there were three people in the car that was pulled over. The names of man who was shot and later died and the two officers involved in the incident are being withheld until the investigation is concluded; they may be released in the next couple of days, Kent said. The officer who was shot is in stable condition and “doing well,” Kent added.
Late Monday afternoon, southbound traffic on Market Street near South City Park was funneled down to left-lane traffic as officers and vans and cars and even a motor home from various law enforcement agencies — of both Redding and Shasta County — clustered around Elmwood Street, where the shooting took place some time around 11 a.m.
Redding Police officers and law enforcement vehicles were gathered around a small teal car that was parked in the middle of the driveway of JT’s Pro Smog and Auto Repair, an area surrounded by yellow crime scene tape. A man working on a car at that business declined to answer a reporter’s questions.
On the next street over, at the Good News Rescue Mission on South Market Street, mission Director of Community Relations Ken White said he’d spent about 90 percent of the day telling what happened just a few hours earlier. He said he was in his office, working on a grant about security issues, when he was called by staff to talk with one of the mission’s guests outside. White said he went outside to talk with the man, and while there White noticed an officer had stopped a vehicle just a little ways up the block. White said he saw three people in the car, and didn’t remember any details about the driver and two passengers, except that the man in the back seat was bald.
White said it struck him that the bald man in the back seat was moving around, as if agitated.
“You know how usually when police pull a car over, everyone’s sitting really still, well, this man was not still. I made a mental note of that and went back inside.” White said that a short while later someone from his office said a situation was developing out front, and White should come outside. White, thinking it was about the guest he’d spoken to earlier, said that instead, he saw a police officer facing the same car White had seen pulled over shortly before, and the police officer had one hand out in front of him — alternating between pointing, and gesturing to stop. White said the officer’s other hand was behind the officer, out of White’s sight. White said the officer was yelling and backing up simultaneously.
White said that it was obvious the situation had escalated and could be potentially dangerous, so he ushered all the Good News Rescue Mission guests and staff back inside and locked down the facility for safety.
A short while later, someone told White shots had been fired, though White hadn’t heard anything. White said that he found it ironic that when he sat down at his computer to resume work, his cursor was left on the sentence of the grant proposal, “… crime rates have risen and we’re experiencing more aggressive behaviorial trends.”
The mission was shut down for about 30 minutes, White said.
Back at the afternoon press conference, Redding Police Chief Peter Hansen said he asked the Shasta County Sheriff’s Department to be the lead investigation agency in the shooting, as is standard procedure for cases involving officer shootings. The investigation involves a multitude of agencies, including the Anderson Police Department, Shasta County District Attorney’s office and California Highway Patrol.
The officer who was injured and the other on-scene officer will be on administrative leave for several days as part of law enforcement procedure, Hansen said. The injured officer will likely need more time to recover from his wound.
“I’d like to thank the members of the public who called today with well wishes for the officer who was shot,” Hansen added.
Below, watch a video of today’s press conference. Photos and video by Jim Dyar.
Jim Dyar is a news, arts and entertainment journalist for A News Cafe and the former arts and entertainment editor for the Record Searchlight’s D.A.T.E. section. Jim is also a songwriter and leader of the Jim Dyar Band. He lives in Redding. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Independent online journalist Doni Greenberg founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke of the Czech Republic. Prior to 2007 Greenberg was an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Redding, CA.