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Reseda | Valley Focus

Suspected Tool Thief Fires on Officer, Flees

September 25, 1996|BETH SHUSTER

A Los Angeles police officer, on his way to work early Tuesday morning, was shot at by a suspected burglar who escaped with a stolen tool chest worth more than $4,000, police said.

Driving east on Hart Street, near Corbin Avenue, Officer Patrick Murphy, noticed a stake-bed truck pulling a large tool chest by a rope. Murphy, who was driving his own car, began following the truck, which picked up speed.

The truck pulled over with Murphy right behind, said West Valley Division Det. Rick Swanston.

The truck's passenger jumped out, fired a shot at Murphy and the pair took off in the truck, losing the officer, Swanston said. Murphy, who has worked for the Police Department for 11 years, was not injured.

Police learned later that the tool chest was taken during a burglary at a garage two blocks away. No one was home at the time, police said.

"It's dangerous out there," Swanston said.

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