September 2nd, 2008 08:44 PM
Ugly: Fairfield (CA) Councilman Dies After Shooting
Fairfield Councilman Dies After Shooting - CNN News Story - KCRA Sacramento
FAIRFIELD, Calif. -- Fairfield City Councilman Matt Garcia died Tuesday after being shot in the head on Labor Day, a hospital representative said Tuesday.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced a $50,000 reward through the state Department of Justice for tips leading to an arrest.
Authorities said Garcia, 22, was shot at about 8:30 p.m. Monday while at a friend's house in the 5000 block of Silverado Drive in Cordelia.
Patty Heffner, a representative of John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, confirmed the death. A decision was made Tuesday to take Garcia off of life support.
Mayor Harry Price said the city council chambers were opened for grief counseling.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Matt and his family," Price added.
Police Chief Kenton Rainey said as Garcia got out of his vehicle at his friend's house, gunshots rang out and the councilman was hit once in the back of the head.
"We have no motive at this time," Rainey added.
Citing a witness interview, police described the alleged shooter as a man who appeared to be 5 feet 9 inches tall. No other description was offered.
Authorities said the man got out of a midsize American sedan and fired multiple shots from a small-caliber handgun or rifle. Bullet casings were found about 50 yards from where Garcia was hit.
Since the man got out of his car, police are not considering the shooting a drive-by, officials said.
Police said late Monday that they may start to question parolees in the community about the shooting and did not rule out the possibility that a gang member or gang members may be involved with the shooting.
"Gangs are located throughout this country, throughout this state (and) Fairfield is not immune from it," Rainey said.
Garcia was elected to the council last November.
"As councilmembers, we're stunned," said Chuck Timm, who serves on the council with Garcia. "As community members, we're outraged."
Garcia ran for office on a platform that centered on crime prevention.
"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch; Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote."
-- Benjamin Franklin
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