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Suspect in Two Slayings Dies in Downey Standoff

Gunman thought to have killed father and brother wounds officer before apparent suicide.

June 17, 2006|Tanya Caldwell | Times Staff Writer

A man who is believed to have killed his father and brother Friday afternoon later wounded a police officer and at least one other person in Downey and then fatally shot himself, authorities said.

Downey police officers responding to a reported assault with a deadly weapon about 5:30 p.m. found a man with gunshot wounds in front of the Del Norte Apartments on Washburn Road, said Deputy Steve Suzuki of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. The man told them another person had been shot inside.

As they entered the building, the suspect opened fire, hitting one of the officers. The officer's partner returned fire, and the police withdrew, Suzuki said.

As the situation unfolded in Downey, sheriff's homicide detectives were investigating a double homicide that had occurred earlier Friday a few miles away in South Gate. The victims were a 50-year-old man and a 10-year-old boy believed to be the gunman's father and brother.

Sgt. John Hocking said homicide detectives responded about 4:50 p.m. to the 10300 block of Kauffman Avenue in South Gate to assist South Gate police in the investigation of the double homicide.

Hocking said the suspect in the South Gate case was Cesar Iniguez, 24. Deputies were working on the theory that he was the man who shot himself in Downey, but said that a definite connection between the two events had not been made by late Friday.

The wounded Downey officer, who was not identified, was being treated at a hospital; he was reported in serious but stable condition, Suzuki said. Bystanders said they thought he had been grazed in the head.

Suzuki said late Friday that it had been determined that two women received injuries in an altercation with the gunman. None were life-threatening.

After the shootings, police evacuated the apartments, near Izetta Avenue, and sheriff's deputies surrounded the complex. The gunman was believed to be barricaded in one of the apartments and a SWAT team moved in to try to force him out.

Witnesses said the man took hostages who were released unharmed about 7:30 p.m., but police said there had been no hostages.

The SWAT team negotiated briefly with the suspect during the standoff but could not engage him in a sustained conversation, Suzuki said.

At about 10 p.m., several loud bangs were heard and smoke rose from the apartment building, apparently from a charge intended to flush the gunman out. Shortly before 11 p.m., deputies determined that the man was dead of a gunshot wound to the upper torso, Suzuki said.


Times staff writer Doug Smith and Times wire services contributed to this report.

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