LA County Sheriff's Deputy Accused of Hoax Shooting Report Fired

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputy who officials said falsely reported he'd been shot outside the Lancaster station last week has been fired, the sheriff said Wednesday.

Deputy Angel Reinosa, 21, had already been relieved of duty after Sheriff's officials said he'd confessed to fabricating the story about being shot, officials said.

During a news conference on Wednesday morning, Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Reinosa has been fired without elaborating.

Several law enforcement sources told NBCLA criminal charges were being considered, including making a false report of an emergency, filing a false police report, perjury, and, potentially the most serious, charges related to Reinosa's claims to medical staff at a hospital and a possible workers' compensation claim.

No charges had been filed as of Wednesday, and Reinosa could not be reached for comment, either directly or through a message passed through the deputies' union, the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs.

NBCLA first reported Monday Reinosa was struggling to meet performance standards while he was assigned to the Lancaster Sheriff's station during a probationary training period, and had been restricted to working inside the station in the day before the false report. The sources said a training officer and supervisor had documented incidents of, "dishonesty," and Reinosa was counseled about his behavior in the hours before the incident.

Reinosa reported he'd been shot at 2:48 p.m. on Wednesday, August 21. He made the initial report over the department's two-way radio system.

"I'm taking shots from the north of the Lancaster helipad," Reinosa said, according to a recording of the radio traffic. "I think I'm hit in the right shoulder, it might have gone through." An LASD spokesperson initially said other deputies were fired at, but later in the day officials said Reinosa was the only person involved.

"Angel Reinosa admitted that he was not shot at from the apartment complex area as he previously claimed," Capt. Kent Wegener said during the Saturday night news conference. "He also told investigators that he had caused the holes in his uniform shirt by cutting it with a knife." Wegener added, "There was no sniper, no shots fired and no gunshot injury sustained to his shoulder -- completely fabricated."

The deputies' union, ALADS, said it condemned Reinosa's actions.

"Not only does it bring discredit to the department and our deputies, it jeopardizes the trust and good faith we ask for from the public and elected officials. Worst of all, it's a slap in the face of deputies who have been shot in the line of duty, and to the families of those who paid the ultimate price for their service," the union said in a statement.

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