Neighbors react to Fresno police officer shooting armed suspect during family disturbance

Jessica Harrington Image
Thursday, April 6, 2023
Neighbors react to Fresno police officer shooting armed suspect during family disturbance
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Shots rang out in a Central Fresno neighborhood on Tuesday night..

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Shots rang out in a Central Fresno neighborhood after a family disturbance led to an officer shooting a suspect Tuesday night.

Both shootings happened around 8 pm in the area of First Street and Brown Avenue.

Officials have not said exactly what led up to the initial shooting between family members.

We know at least one man was shot and then, as police arrived, an officer fired hitting the suspected gunman who was still armed.

Radio traffic from Fresno police officers who responded to a disturbance and shots fired call Tuesday night gives insight into what officers encountered as they arrived.

People could be heard yelling in the background.

"It was a pretty chaotic scene in the alley, with relatives, with one person who was shot covered in blood approaching the officer, and the other relative who was armed with a handgun," Deputy Chief Mark Salazar said Tuesday night.

Deputy Chief Salazar said as officers were responding they were notified someone had been shot.

Once they arrived, officers told the alleged shooter to drop the weapon multiple times, but he didn't.

"We had one officer that shot at the armed suspect and we had three other witnessing officers." Deputy Chief Salazar said.

Officials say it does not appear the man fired his weapon toward officers.

Bobby Martinez lives in the apartment complex. He said he was taking his dog outside when he heard the commotion.

"Screams got louder, like a little girl was screaming. I pulled my dog inside. I was about to come back over here when I put her in, I just heard four gunshots, five gunshots go off," Martinez said.

He says they normally deal with fires in the area, but rarely violence.

"I've been here four and a half years and this is the first instance that we kind of notice," Martinez said.

He says it's frightening to know it happened so close to his home, but knows it can happen anywhere.

He says he feels bad for the family involved.

"For this to happen in front of the family. I mean, to the family, in front of the family, it's hard. I can just imagine what they're going through, every single one of them," Martinez said.

Officials have not identified the officer who fired his gun, but say he is a department veteran assigned to the northeast district.

He has been placed on administrative leave.

The suspect who was shot by police has also not been identified.

Both individuals who were shot remain in the hospital in critical condition.

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