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Off-Duty Police Officer Shoots Man in Dispute

August 20, 1994|MARK I. PINSKY | TIMES STAFF WRITER

SANTA ANA — An off-duty Long Beach police officer shot and wounded a 27-year-old Laguna Beach man Friday after a dispute over a box of household goods, authorities said.

After the shooting of Brad James Demontigny, investigating teams from both the Long Beach and Santa police departments, as well as investigators from the Orange County district attorney's office, arrived on the scene in the 3000 block of South Main Street.

Demontigny, taken to a nearby hospital for treatment for a shoulder wound, was a passenger in a van driven by a man identified by police as Jeffrey Dean Demontigny, 34, of San Clemente. Jeffrey Demontigny was detained at the scene by investigators.

The 27-year-old Long Beach officer was not identified nor detained, according to Santa Ana Police Sgt. Dick Faust.

Faust said the incident began about 6 p.m. on Main Street.

The Long Beach officer told investigators that he and his father were transporting boxes of household goods in their truck when one of the boxes fell onto the street. The officer pulled over and his father, who was a passenger in the truck, got out to retrieve it.

However, in the street the father saw two men from a van pick up the box. When he asked them to give back the box, they refused, the Long Beach officer said. The father returned to the truck, which followed the van to the next stop light at Main and MacArthur Boulevard.

At that point, the officer got out of the truck and approached the passenger side of the van, displaying his badge and identifying himself as a police officer, he later told police.

When the passenger refused to return the box and reached under the seat, the officer said, he drew his 9-millimeter semiautomatic handgun and fired once, through the van window. As the van drove off, the officer fired a second time, into the van.

Within minutes, both vehicles pulled over and both drivers called police, Faust said.

Faust said the box contained "nothing of great value."

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