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Gunman Dies in Standoff

Man shot his roommate and fired at officers, then apparently killed himself, police say.

August 19, 2003|Michael Krikorian | Times Staff Writer

A gunman barricaded himself inside a Sylmar home, shot and wounded one of his roommates and exchanged fire with police before apparently taking his own life early Monday, authorities said.

Police received a "shots fired" call about 9:45 p.m. Sunday in the 13000 block of Gridley Street. Responding officers from the LAPD's Foothill Division were told by a second roommate that the suspect, Arthur David Gates, 49, had a gun.

The suspect's roommates, one of whom was shot in the arm, left the house before police arrived, Officer Rafael Erives said.

Moments later, a man appeared in the home's doorway and pointed a gun at the officers. "Fearing for his own life, one of the officers fired his weapon at the suspect, but did not hit him," Los Angeles Police Department Officer Adriana Sanchez said. Officers and the suspect then exchanged fire, but no one was injured, she said.

A SWAT team summoned to the scene fired tear gas into the house. After midnight, SWAT officers entered the house and found the suspect dead "from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound," Sanchez said.

Los Angeles County Coroner's Lt. Ed Winter confirmed that Gates' wound appeared to be self-inflicted.

The motive for Gates' alleged actions was not known, police said.

The wounded roommate was treated and released from a local hospital, Erives said.

No other information was provided, pending an inquiry by the Los Angeles Police Critical Incident Investigation Division, which reviews officer-involved shootings.

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