A traffic stop led to a fight between the driver and a San Diego police officer during which witnesses reported hearing someone yell “Get off me” before shots were fired.
A man was shot by a San Diego police officer at the intersection of San Vicente and Carlsbad Streets in the Lomita area.
The suspect was driving westbound around 1 a.m., squealing his tires and driving erratically when an officer spotted him and tried to pull him over. The officer reported the driver made a U-turn and drove toward the patrol car before taking off again. He then stopped in the middle of the intersection and got out, according to police.
At some point the man got into a physical altercation with the officer who deployed a Taser to end the struggle, police said, but the man removed one of the barbs and took off.
The officer chased the driver and a second struggle took place during which the officer used a baton. Witnesses heard the officer yelling at the suspect, "Get off me" according to police. Soon after that, the officer fired a shot hitting the suspect in the hip.
The officer was afraid he would be taken to the ground according to SDPD Lt. Ernie Herbert. The officer also worried the suspect was going to grab his weapon from him, Herbert said.
Emergency crews loaded the driver into an ambulance and transported him to Mercy Hospital. He is in surgery, in critical condition, according to police.
The officer is a 5-year veteran, assigned to the Southeastern Division according to a police news release. He complained of pain after the shooting and may have suffered some minor injuries in the struggles, according to Herbert.