LOS ANGELES -- Deputies staking out a gas station that has been plagued by robberies shot and killed a bystander in a gunfight with two robbery suspects, a sheriff's department spokesman said Saturday.
Four deputies at the self-service station in Lynwood,about 10 miles south of downtown, saw two men approach Severo Carillo, 38, who was pumping gas into his van shortly before 11 p.m. PST Friday, Deputy Kevin Carney said.
One of the men had a handgun.
When it became apparent the two were trying to rob Carillo, Carney said, deputy Joseph Purcell, a seven-year veteran of the force, stepped out and identified himself, ordering the men to drop the weapon.
The gunman disobeyed the order, however, turning instead to point the weapon at Purcell, who fired one blast from his shotgun, Carney said. As Purcell fired, Carillo suddenly came into the line of fire and was hit in the back. He was dead at the scene.
'We haven't been able to establish whether the victim was pulled in front of the suspect, whether he backed away from the suspect and into the line of fire or whether the suspect jumped behind him,' Carney said.
'There will almost certainly be an investigation.'
Both suspects fled the scene but were captured a short distance away. Sylvester Reynolds, 23, was discovered hiding in a chicken coop. Deputy Robert Carr stopped Howard Bonner, 20, by firing a shotgun blast into his left calf.
Bonner was treated for his wound at Martin Luther King Hospital and then transferred to the jail ward at County-USC Medical Center. Both men were booked on murder and robbery charges.