Boy playing with toy gun is shot by sheriff's deputy

The boy pointed the gun at officers, who shot him once before determining that 'it was a juvenile playing cops and robbers,' sheriff's spokesman says. Witnesses report the boy was 15.

Times staff and wire reports
May 11, 2009

A boy in Palmdale who was playing cops and robbers with a toy gun was shot and wounded Sunday night by a Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy, authorities said.

The boy was shot in the upper torso, said Deputy Ed Hernandez, a sheriff's spokesman. He declined to release the victim's name or age. A witness told reporters for KABC-TV Channel 7 that the boy was 15.

Deputy Jeff Gordon said the boy was airlifted to a local hospital and was in stable condition.

Gordon said deputies responded to reports about 8 p.m. that someone was riding a bicycle and brandishing a handgun. Deputies spotted the rider and ordered him to drop the weapon but instead, Gordon says, he pointed it at the deputies.

The deputies, fearing for their lives, shot him once," Hernandez said. "Later on, they determined it was a juvenile playing cops and robbers."

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