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Saturday, July 28, 2012 - Page updated at 09:30 a.m.
Anaheim, Calif., police shoot at burglary suspect
The Associated Press
Anaheim police opened fire on a burglary suspect Friday morning, days after officer-involved shootings killed two people and sparked violent protests in the Southern California city.
It was unclear whether anyone was hurt in the confrontation.
"We have been in contact with the local hospitals. There is no indication that anyone has come in with a gunshot wound," Sgt. Bob Dunn said.
Police answering a burglar alarm at a condominium complex clubhouse at about 3:15 a.m. spotted appliances outside and a man leaving the building, Dunn said.
An officer began chasing him while another officer checked out a nearby car, which suddenly sped off in the direction of the first officer, Dunn said.
The second officer then opened fire on the car but the driver escaped, Dunn said.
A search for the first man ended about 45 minutes later when a paroled burglar was found hiding near some train tracks, Dunn said.
The man had been bitten by a police dog and was taken to a hospital for treatment before being booked on suspicion of burglary and resisting arrest. His name was not immediately released.
The shooting came as activists in Los Angeles, Seattle and other cities called for Friday solidarity protests over the earlier police killings.
Last Saturday, a police officer fatally shot Manuel Diaz, who was unarmed, outside an apartment complex. Officers said Diaz, who had a criminal record, failed to heed orders and threw something as he fled police.
The city's police union said Diaz reached for his waistband, which led the officer to believe he was drawing a gun.
Diaz's family, which is suing for $50 million in damages, says he was shot in the leg and the back of the head.
On Sunday night, police shot to death Joel Acevedo, a suspected gang member they say fired at officers after a pursuit.
The shootings prompted four days of violent protests, culminating Tuesday night in hundreds of demonstrators surging through downtown streets. Police said some in the crowd smashed the windows of 20 businesses, set trash can fires, threw rocks and bottles at police and damaged City Hall and police headquarters. Two dozen people were arrested.
However, Diaz's mother publicly called for an end to violence, and the streets remained calm over the next few days.
The Orange County district attorney's office is investigating and the U.S. attorney's office and the FBI also agreed to review the shootings to determine if civil rights investigations are warranted.
Friday's shooting will not be investigated by the county district attorney's office unless it turns out someone was injured, Dunn said.
Meanwhile, Police Chief John Welter urged residents to ignore what he termed irresponsible rumors about Diaz's death pending the outcome of the investigation.
People are being given "rumors rather than facts, and they are being led to believe that the police would actually execute someone," Welter told the Orange County Register (http://bit.ly/Og4XAN). "If that's the case and if the investigation reveals that's the case, I'll be the first to ask the district attorney to prosecute the officer."
Copyright © The Seattle Times Company
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