The Los Angeles Police Department said Thursday it was unable to arrest a man suspected of attacking an off-duty detective along downtown's Skid Row because investigators have not been able to interview the injured officer.
The detective, who was critically hurt in the fight a week ago, was undergoing medical treatment and was under the influence of medications, an LAPD official said.
Investigators said they hoped to interview the detective in the next few days and a decision about arrests and criminal charges would follow. The assailant was shot by the off-duty detective during the confrontation and was being treated in a hospital.
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The man has been uncooperative with investigators, police said, and his name was not being made public because he has not been arrested. The fight and shooting happened around 3:30 a.m. on Feb. 14 near Sixth and San Julian streets.
Several law enforcement sources familiar with the case told NBC this week the injured detective was "extremely intoxicated" in the minutes before the violence, and could be seen on security video from the area having difficulty standing up.
At one point before the fight the sources said the detective entered the lobby of the LAPD's Central Area police station, then walked out. After the fight and shooting someone stole the detective's handgun, and police confirmed Thursday the gun was recovered during an unrelated arrest in downtown.
The Department also confirmed the detective "had been drinking" before the incident but declined to comment on the level of intoxication.
The injured detective has not been publicly identified by the Department. He's been with the LAPD for more than 20 years and was assigned to a narcotics unit at the 77th Street station in South LA.