Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department

Man Killed In Deputy-Involved Shooting In Pico Rivera

Deputies were in pursuit of the suspect's vehicle when he crashed and shots were fired by deputies at the man's car.

A man allegedly armed with a handgun as he ran from pursuing deputies was killed in a deputy-involved shooting in Pico Rivera Thursday morning, authorities said.

The fatal shooting occurred about 2 a.m. in the 7100 block of Pico Vista Road, according to Deputy Dangelo Robinson of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

The man was in a car when deputies initially attempted to pull him over as a suspected DUI. After a brief pursuit, he crashed, and then ran off, according to Homicide Lt. Joe Mendoza.  

"The suspect fled on foot, armed with a handgun," Lt. Mendoza said.

Deputies fired near the crash scene, and then caught up with the man again several blocks away. More shots were fired and the man went down and was pronounced dead, said Mendoza.

The man was identified as Carmelo Pizarro, Jr., 22, by a man and a woman at the scene who identified themselves as his parents.

A tearful Maria Reza said the sound of a helicopter brought her outside her home on Pico Vista Road, and she saw the final moments of the confrontation between her son and deputies.  

"I didn't think they were going to shoot," she said. "Next thing I heard, it seemed like six gunshots."

Authorities recovered a suspect handgun between two houses near where Pizarro, Jr. was shot, raising the possibility he had discarded it shortly before the final confrontation.

Mendoza said it appeared the suspect did not fire at deputies. At this early stage of investigation, what the pursuing deputies may have perceived as an imminent threat — the standard for use of lethal force — he could not say. 

Carmelo Pizarro, Sr. said his son had been doing well, but in recent weeks had been distraught after the death of his best friend, who had been killed on the very same block June 28 in a shooting investigated as possibly gang violence.

Memorial candles remained at the location only feet from where Pizarro, Jr. died.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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