Sep 17, 2023 - Politics & Policy

LA County sheriff's deputy fatally shot in patrol car

Authorities are investigating the death of a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputy Saturday, who officials say was found unconscious in his patrol car after being shot. Photo: Celal Gunes/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Authorities are investigating the death of a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department deputy who died after officials say he was shot inside his patrol car.

The big picture: The department said one of its deputies, Ryan Clinkunbroomer, was discovered unconscious in his patrol vehicle Saturday in Palmdale, Calif., and the suspect remains unknown.

  • Clinkunbroomer, 30, had just left the station Saturday and was in uniform when the shooting occurred in Palmdale, roughly 60 miles north of Los Angeles.

What they're saying: "At this time, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Homicide Investigators are investigating the murder of our deputy," Los Angeles Sheriff Robert Luna said during a press conference Saturday night.

  • "Detectives are in the initial stages of this investigation and seeking the public's assistance to apprehend this suspect," Luna said.
  • After a civilian discovered Clinkunbroomer unconscious in his vehicle, Luna said he was transported to a local hospital, where he was treated for a gunshot wound and later pronounced dead.

Luna thinks the shooting was a "targeted act" based on what the department knows, but noted that the department is "still in the extremely early stages of this investigation."

  • Luna urged the public to help the department in identifying a suspect in the shooting.
  • "We really need your help. We need to get this guy off the street — guy or guys — he's a public safety threat. He ambushed and killed — murdered — one of our deputies. We need your help to get him off the street," Luna said.
  • "The person that did this is a coward, and they will be caught," Palmdale Mayor Laura Bettencourt said during the press conference.

Zoom in: Clinkunbroomer, a field training officer for the department, was a third-generation law enforcement member.

  • Luna said Clinkunbroomer had gotten engaged only days ago and was "just starting his life from that aspect of it."
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