Two Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies were “fighting for their lives” Saturday after a lone gunman walked up to their parked patrol car and fired on them through an open window, officials said.
The female and male partners were hit multiple times in the car outside a metro station in the city of Compton, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said at a press conference Saturday night.
Surveillance footage of the scene released by authorities shows a man walking up to the car on the passenger side and firing several times “without warning or provocation,” said an earlier statement from the LASD. The suspect immediately fled on foot.
The shooter hadn’t been apprehended as of late Saturday.
“These are real people doing a tough job,” Villanueva told reporters. “It just shows the dangers of the job in the blink of any eye.”
He called the shooting a “cowardly act. The two deputies were doing their job watching out for the safety of the people on the train,” he said, adding: “Seeing somebody just walk up and start shooting on them — it pisses me off. It dismays me.”
The deputies were not identified, but Villanueva said one is the 31-year-old mother of a 6-year-old boy. The male deputy is 24. Both of them joined the force just over a year ago, said Villanueva, who swore them into office.
The two were both out of surgery by late Saturday. “We’re going to keep them in our thoughts and prayers,” said Villanueva.
The Sheriff’s Department posted a clip of the surveillance footage on Twitter. It’s shown below. Be warned: It’s disturbing.
Officials asked for anyone who had witnessed the shooting or knew anything about it to contact the LASD.