Three CHP officers shot 33 bullets at El Cajon man following pursuit and crash, incident may have been 'suicide by cop'
Anthony Osorio, a 27 year-old resident of the unincorporated El Cajon community of Crest shot and killed by California Highway Patrol officers over the weekend, had over 30 bullets fired at him after refusing orders to stop and advancing upon officers following a car wreck over the weekend, the Sheriff’s Department confirmed yesterday.
Officers involved in the shooting were officer David Bigalk, officer Ryan Harrison, and sergeant Phillip Jones, according to a Sheriff’s Homicide Detail release.
After a high-speed pursuit that began on Interstate 8, Osorio eventually rolled his 2005 Chevrolet Tahoe near the 1900 block of La Cresta Drive, with the vehicle coming to rest back on its wheels. A CHP video camera shows that Osorio refused orders to put his hands up and instead exited the vehicle, screaming profanities and advancing toward the three patrolmen.
According to a police statement, officers were unable to see Osorio’s right side and believed him to be motioning as if reaching for a gun. They then opened fire, combining to unleash 33 shots, 18 of which found their target.
A later investigation found that Osorio did not have a gun. Though a knife was found in his pocket, it does not appear that he attempted to retrieve it at any point during the confrontation.
While an investigation is still ongoing, detectives have already made contact with a companion of Osorio’s who had talked earlier in the evening about committing suicide by enticing police to shoot him.