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New Sketch Released of Suspect in Killing of South Bay Officer : Investigation: The more detailed composite was drawn by the artist in the Polly Klaas case. Manhattan Beach residents continue to visit at an informal memorial to the first policeman slain in the beach community.

January 03, 1994|RICH SIMON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

As mourners paid their respects to the first police officer slain in Manhattan Beach, authorities Sunday released a new sketch of a suspect in the shooting of Officer Martin Ganz.

Ganz, 29, was shot three times while making a Dec. 27 traffic stop outside the Manhattan Village shopping mall.

The new sketch, more detailed than one released last week, was drawn by the artist who prepared a composite in the Northern California kidnaping of Polly Klaas.

"There's a good chance that this is really going to help us," said Sgt. Bob Stoneman of the Sheriff's Department. Authorities sought out the artist, Jean Boyland of Oregon, after hearing of her work in the Klaas case.

The suspect is described as a dark-haired Asian man in his late 20s or early 30s with a medium build, possibly 5-feet-6-inches to 5-feet-10-inches tall. He is described as also having a clean-cut, very neat appearance.

Investigators have received about 300 calls, "yet it's not taking us in any one direction," Stoneman said. Investigators were continuing to search for the drivers of two vehicles filmed by a nearby bank camera, possibly within minutes of the shooting: a small black car and a white, two-door hatchback.

No motive is known for the shooting.

The gunman began firing at Ganz as the officer approached the door of his car, investigators said. Ganz retreated behind his squad car, but the gunman followed on foot and fired three more shots.

Ganz, a five-year member of the police force, did not return fire and his service revolver was found on the ground near him. Ganz did not radio in the license plate of the vehicle he stopped.

The spot where Ganz was shot has become an informal memorial to the slain officer, filled with flowers, candles and other tributes, including a sign reading, "Stop the Madness."

Some flowers came from residents of the beach community. Some were donated by law enforcement officers from other cities. Most were placed there anonymously.

"It's certainly changed us," said Joanne Sturges, a Manhattan Beach resident who took a break from her Sunday shopping to visit the site. "It's made us aware of the fact that we're not isolated."

Across the street, mourners paid their respects to Ganz, dressed in uniform, at the White and Day Mortuary.

A memorial service for Ganz, a Garden Grove native survived by his mother and five sisters, has been set for 10:30 a.m. today at American Martyrs Catholic Church. Interment at Inglewood Memorial Park will follow.

A poem was displayed Sunday at the site of the shooting. It read:

"Frustrating. That's what it's like to be a cop today. We hired that guy to do a job. A job too rotten for us to do. Then we isolate him. Fight him. Ignore him. And that's what it's like to be a cop. And it's getting worse . . . (So) smile at the next policeman you see."

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