The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department offered a 100,000 reward Sunday in its search for a gunman who walked up to two deputies sitting in their patrol vehicle and shot them multiple times before fleeing.
The lone gunman ambushed the woman and man Saturday night at the Martin Luther King Transit Center in Compton, California, approaching their vehicle from behind and firing several rounds, the department said.
The deputies were in critical condition Sunday after undergoing surgery. The 31-year-old mother of a 6-year-old boy and the 24-year-old man had graduated from the sheriff’s training academy about 14 months ago, sworn in by Sheriff Alex Villanueva, who held a news conference after the shooting.
“The gunman walked up on the deputies and opened fire without warning or provocation,” the department tweeted Saturday night.
The shooting comes as people around the country are protesting police brutality against Black people and calling for reform, prompted by the May in-custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The civil unrest has turned in to a campaign issue in the November election.
President Donald Trump tweeted early Sunday that whoever shot the Los Angeles County deputies are, “Animals that must be hit hard!” and again saying, “If they die, fast trial death penalty for the killer. Only way to stop this.”
His Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden, also weighed in.
“These attacks are absolutely unconscionable – they bring only greater violence, injustice, and grief to a nation in desperate need of healing,” Biden said in a statement.
The $100,000 reward was offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the gunman.