Long Beach police who shot off-duty LAPD officer were investigating possibly drunk man with a large gun
By Tracy Manzer and Kelly Puente, Staff writers
Article Launched: 07/30/2008 12
30 PM PDT
LONG BEACH - As police prepared to serve a search warrant at the Belmont Heights home of an LAPD officer shot by Long Beach police early Wednesday, sources within the department revealed more details about the incident.
Long Beach officers were called to the Belmont Heights area at about 12:30 a.m. after residents reported seeing a man with a gun who looked drunk and was stumbling down the street, sources said.
The gun was described as a large shotgun or a pellet gun with a light on the end of it. It wasn't clear if the light was a laser site or a flashlight, officers said.
When responding units arrived, they saw Jason Geggie, a 26-year-old LAPD officer, who matched the suspect description and appeared drunk and was stumbling, sources told the Press-Telegram.
The shooting, they said, happened within a matter of seconds of the officer's arrival and the gun was recovered.
The Los Angeles Police Department confirmed Wednesday morning that Geggie was shot in the arm and torso and was in stable condition at a nearby hospital.
Geggie was booked on charges of exhibiting a firearm in the presence of a police officer in a threatening manner and exhibiting a firearm at any person in a threatening manner, police said.
Residents in the area of Termino Avenue and Fourth Street called police late Tuesday night with reports of an armed man walking down the street, said Long Beach Police Sgt. Dina Zapalski.
Police located Geggie in the 200 block of Mira Mar Avenue, where an officer-involved shooting occurred at 12:30 a.m.
A firearm was recovered at the scene, she said. No Long Beach officers were injured.
Authorities have not released details of the shooting and could not say if Geggie lived in that area.
But sources within the department confirmed he lives in Belmont Heights and that friends of his told investigators he had been drinking heavily when he wandered off before the shooting.
Several neighbors said they heard two gunshots. Shortly before the shooting, a police helicopter was scouring the area with its searchlight for several minutes, they said.
Lisa Sage was barbecuing with her boyfriend, Mikey Loza, at her apartment one block south of the shooting when they saw the helicopter and then heard the gunfire that they at first mistook for fireworks, the couple said.
Sage said the area can be noisy at night because of patrons at nearby bars, but that she had never seen an incident like this in her three years in the neighborhood.
"It creeps me out, big time," Sage said.
As many as 10 police units appeared to have responded to the scene initially, followed by police investigators and other officers who closed the 200 block of Mira Mar Avenue, as well as parts of Second Street and Broadway.
Long Beach Police, with LAPD present, were preparing to serve a search warrant at Geggie's home, sources said.
In addition to the Long Beach Police Department's ongoing investigation, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office is conducting an independent investigation, which is routine for all officer-involved shootings in Los Angeles County.
Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact Long Beach Police Homicide Detectives at (562) 570-7244.