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Charges to Be Sought in Chase That Drew Gunfire

November 13, 2003|Andrew Blankstein | Times Staff Writer

Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said Wednesday that they would ask prosecutors to file charges against a man who they said led law enforcement officers on a chase through a San Gabriel Valley neighborhood and twice tried to run down deputies with a sport utility vehicle.

The suspect, identified as 39-year-old Tommy Campbell, and a female whose identity was withheld were being treated at a local hospital for gunshot wounds after deputies fired multiple times at them Tuesday.

Homicide Capt. Frank Merriman said the incident began when the SUV tried to ram a patrol car, setting off a chase over a "figure-eight" route in unincorporated territory near Goodall Avenue and El Sur Street south of Monrovia.

The deputies began firing when the two appeared to reach into their waistbands for weapons after the SUV looped back, caromed off an unmarked law enforcement car and hit a fence.

"They came out of the vehicle on the passenger side and almost simultaneously crouched with their hands at their waists," Merriman said. "Deputies, fearing for their safety and believing the suspects were armed, fired their weapons."

Authorities recovered a .45-caliber handgun from the SUV, Merriman said. They were also looking for other clues across a wide area of the pursuit, which stretched for more than half a mile. Six deputies involved in the incident fired more than 50 rounds altogether, he said.

The shooting and chase occurred about 6 p.m. Tuesday after officers with the Community Narcotics Enforcement Team spotted a man who they said had been acting suspicious and tried to pull him over.

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