The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department says there is “no information yet” to indicate that a carjacking suspect in Lynwood – Deonte Murray – is the Compton shooting suspect. That news came from a sheriff’s department spokesman’s statements in a live press conference on the evening of September 15.
“There is no information that would lead us to believe that he is involved in the shooting of our deputies,” the department spokesman added of the carjacking suspect. He did not explicitly rule it out, however, but he said authorities have no information pointing to that. Right now the suspect is facing a carjacking charge. The suspect was located inside a trash bin at the rear of a property after a SWAT team used a dog and gas to try to get him out. He used a high-powered rifle in the carjacking, the departmental spokesman said. He gave the carjacking suspect’s name as Deonte Murray.
“At this point, no,” he said, when asked again whether the carjacking suspect is the Compton shooting suspect. He did say the massive law enforcement response was due to heightened caution because of the Compton shooting suspect manhunt and that authorities were investigating whether there was a tie.
“At this moment in time, he is a carjacking suspect,” he said. “We’re looking at all avenues,” he added, indicating that he hadn’t been told there’s a link to Compton. Deonte Murray is 36, has no known address, and there’s a “gang related nexus” to the case, he said.
There was conflicting information. The standoff in Lynwood, California may be related to the ambush-style shooting of two Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies, NBC Los Angeles reported earlier.
Bill Melugin, of FOXLA, wrote on Twitter just before 10 p.m. on September 15, “A LASD public information officer is on the way here to Compton right now to give an update on the hours long containment of an armed car jacker. Rumors running rampant the suspect is the shooter who ambushed two deputies, Sheriff tells me it is *not*. Standby for more. @FOXLA.” However, at the press conference, the sheriff didn’t rule it out or in.
The standoff involves a carjacking suspect. That suspect “led LA County Sheriff’s Department deputies on a high speed chase Tuesday” and authorities are “increasingly confident” that suspect “is connected” to the attack on the two deputies, according to NBC Los Angeles. The television station stopped short of saying authorities believe the suspected carjacker is the shooting suspect. The sheriff denied the carjacking incident was related to the Compton shooting earlier in the day, that station also reported.
However, ABC News reported, “Department officials told ABC News the massive response is not related to the search for the gunman in Saturday’s shooting of two deputies in Compton.” That report came before the sheriff’s statements at the press conference, however.
The bottom line is that Villanueva indicated sheriff’s officials just don’t know but said they don’t have anything pointing to it.
The situation was still unfolding on the evening of September 15.
Here’s what you need to know:
The Carjacking Suspect, Named as Deonte Murray, Ran Into a Nearby Residence, Reports Say
According to NBC Los Angeles, the carjacking suspect “was driving a light blue Toyota coupe that crashed in the 3100 block of Carlin Avenue in Lynwood, and the sources said the driver ran from the car into a home or condo nearby.”
A city block of homes nearby was being evacuated as members of the LA County Sheriff’s Department’s Special Enforcement Bureau, its SWAT team, prepared to search homes, apartments, buildings and yards.
The Officers Were Ambushed as They Sat in Their Squad Car, Video Shows
The Sheriff’s Department earlier released a video showing the suspect shooting into the squad car. The department says the shooting was unprovoked and occurred as the officers sat in their car at a transit station. You can watch that video above.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department wrote on Twitter:
“… 2 of our Sheriff Deputies were shot in Compton and were transported to a local hospital. They are both still fighting for their lives, so please keep them in your thoughts and prayers. … One male deputy and one female deputy were ambushed as they sat in their patrol vehicle. Both sustained multiple gunshot wounds and are in critical condition. They are both currently undergoing surgery. The suspect is still at large.”
President Donald Trump wrote on Twitter of the Compton shooting, “Animals that must be hit hard!”
“God bless them, it looks like they’re going to be able to recover,” the sheriff said previously of the wounded deputies, according to The Associated Press. “They survived the worst.”
According to The New York Times, the male deputy is 24, and the female deputy is the 31-year-old mother of a 6-year-old boy.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department announced a $100,000 reward in the manhunt for the suspect. People with tips are urged to call 323-890-5500.
The reward poster says that, around 6:58 p.m, the lone gunman ambushed the deputies as they sat in their patrol vehicle at MLK Transit Center.
The suspect was described as a Black male, 28-30 years old, wearing dark clothing. He was last seen northbound on Willowbrook Avenue in a black 4-door sedan.