A Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) police officer was shot in the chest by an unknown assailant on Manton Street across from El Camino Real High School at approximately 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to police officials.
Officer Jeffrey Stenroos was shot after approaching a suspect who matched the description of a man suspected of breaking into cars in the area.
The suspect fired five shots, with one hitting Stenroos in the chest. The officer’s Kevlar vest absorbed the impact.
A local resident heard the noise and called the police. The police responded quickly, setting up a seven mile perimeter spanning from the 101 Freeway at Valley
Circle to Fallbrook Avenue and as far north as Oxnard Street and Platt Ave.
“He [Stenroos] was really lucky,” said Officer Bob Wronkowsk. “That vest saved his life.”
Stenroos is said to be in fair condition and recovering in the hospital. He is reportedly responsive, talkative and alert, according to Deputy Chief Kurt Albanese.
Several schools in the area were placed on lockdown after the shooting, and parents in the area were clearly upset and anxious to get their kids home.
City Councilor Eric Garcia said that no children were hurt and that the lockdown was intended to ensure that until the suspect was taken into custody or they exhausted their search, no student would be put in harms way.
“This was not a school shooting,” said Garcia. “This was a shooting near a school and we need parents to understand the difference.”
Over 350 officers were involved in the search, which included K9 units. As of 5 p.m. the police had not found the suspect but had shortened the perimeter area, releasing students from most of the lockdown schools including Hale Middle School.
The suspect, still at large, is described as a 40-year-old white male with grey hair and approximately 5 foot 9 inches tall. He was last seen wearing blue jeans and a black jacket as he fled east on Burbank Boulevard.
List of Schools that were locked down:
El Camino Real High School, Miguel Continuation School, Hale Middle School, Welby Way Elementary, Lockhurst Elementary, Woodlake Elementary, Haynes Street Elementary, Pomelo Drive Elementary.
for info about lockdowns call 213-241-6766