Man wanting “suicide by cop” shoots at officers during Hemet standoff

HEMET — A man saying he wanted to commit “suicide by cop” before shooting at officers who responded to his Hemet home managed to walk away – in handcuffs and with only superficial injuries – after responding officers fired a hail of bullets back at the gun-wielding suspect early Wednesday evening, Dec. 26. Officials are now investigating the standoff and shooting, which happened in the 2900 block of Rafferty Rd., between Brandon and Julie ways.

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Although it is not yet known what led to tonight’s standoff, official radio traffic around 7 p.m. indicated that a man told officials on the phone he was suicidal and wanted officers to shoot him. Hemet patrol and gang task force officers who responded to the residence spoke to the man on the phone several times while attempting to get the subject to come out of the home and surrender peacefully.

While officials negotiated with the man, who has not yet been publicly identified, they reported seeing him through the home’s windows and said he was pacing through the house. Officers at the scene also reported that the highly agitated man could be seen holding a handgun in his left hand.

At one point as the standoff continued, the suspect suddenly opened the front door slightly and fired his handgun at officers positioned behind their vehicles outside the residence. The officers responded by firing a barrage of bullets back at the suspect, who managed to duck back into the home just as officers began firing.

The front of a home appeared to show numerous bullet holes near where a man had just fired on officers during a standoff earlier tonight. Miguel Shannon/OC Hawk News photo

The front door and area around the home’s entryway, complete with a bright red Christmas bows and other holiday decorations, later appeared to show where numerous rounds fired by the officers’ fired bullets impacted the home. A large front window beside the front door showed multiple bullet impacts, and a set of blinds within the home also appeared to show several bullet holes.

A short time later, radio traffic indicated the man had once again called officers, and after a change of heart the man decided he wanted to negotiate his peaceful surrender. Officers at the scene ordered him to exit the residence with his hands up and the man complied, following all officers’ orders as they took him into custody without further incident.

Although firefighters, paramedics, and other medical personnel, had been summoned to the scene early in the standoff, officers determined they were not needed due to the suspect sustaining what one witness later described as “superficial scratches.”

The suicidal gunman was later transported to Hemet PD for further questioning and processing to be booked into jail. As of this report, he had not yet been booked into a county facility and it was not immediately known what charges the man was facing.

Hemet PD has not yet released any information about their investigation, which is active and ongoing at the scene, and no further information was immediately available.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information is available.

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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.

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