Santa Maria, CA

California officer shot dead an unarmed 57-year-old man while firing at a suspect

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Police Department

Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has disclosed the shooting of an unarmed civilian by a police officer in Guadalupe, California while firing at a suspect over the weekend.

In a statement released on Sunday, the Sheriff’s Office stated that the shooting incident which occurred in the small town of Guadalupe, 10 miles east of Santa Maria happened around 9:40 p.m.

According to the authorities report, Officers of the Guadalupe Police Department arrived at Birch and Obispo streets after receiving a tip that a suspect wanted on an outstanding felony warrant was there.

The officers upon spotting the suspect began firing at the suspect when an unarmed civilian - 59-year-old Juan Luis Olvera-Preciado who was sitting in his car got struck. It was not revealed what prompted the police to open fire.

Police said that Olvera-Preciado died from the gunshot injury at the scene.

According to sheriff’s officials, the suspect whose name was withheld was later arrested and is being investigated by the California Department of Justice.

“At this early stage of the investigation, the details that are available for release are that an officer fired his service weapon at the wanted suspect, but instead struck an uninvolved resident who was sitting in a vehicle in the 100 block of Obispo Street,” the statement said.

The statement also disclosed that Guadalupe Police Chief Michael Cash met with Olvera-Preciado’s family and sympathised with them. He also requested that Sheriff’s Office investigate the incident. However, state law requires that all law enforcement shootings that involve the death of an unarmed civilian should be investigated by the Attorney General.

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