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Ventura County

Officer in Fatality Is Placed on Leave

Investigation: Probe involving Oxnard policeman, whose car hit a Seabee while on a 911 call, continues.

January 03, 2002|TRACY WILSON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

An Oxnard police officer who struck and killed a 20-year-old Seabee with his patrol car New Year's Day while responding to a 911 call has been placed on administrative leave.

Humberto Jimenez, a 16-year veteran of the department, is expected to remain on paid leave for several days while the California Highway Patrol conducts an investigation.

"He is very shaken," Oxnard Police Department spokesman David Keith said.

Jimenez was headed to south Oxnard about 4:20 a.m. Tuesday to provide backup to officers handling a domestic disturbance call when his cruiser struck Christopher Shubert as the sailor crossed Ventura Road just north of Channel Islands Boulevard, officials said.

Shubert had been eating with members of his battalion at a nearby restaurant and left to buy cigarettes at a store across the four-lane road, officials said. As he returned, he was hit by the southbound cruiser, which did not have its flashing lights or siren on, officials said.

Shubert died at the scene.

Oxnard police did not say how fast Jimenez was traveling, but said the impact knocked Shubert out of his shoes and carried him about 100 feet into a crosswalk at Ventura Road and Channel Islands Boulevard.

The intersection is next to Naval Base Ventura County in Port Hueneme, where Shubert was stationed.

Keith said department policy indicates it is not necessary for an officer providing backup to use lights and sirens.

CHP officials said it will take at least a week to complete the investigation.

The Highway Patrol is handling the investigation at the request of Oxnard police.

Toxicology tests, routine in traffic fatalities, are being conducted on Shubert to determine whether alcohol or drugs were involved.

Shubert's funeral arrangements are being handled by the Navy.

Coroner's officials said his body was being flown to family members in Pembroke, Mass.

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