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November 26, 2006
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Off-duty Calif. officer killed in shooting

By Karl Fischer, Staff Writer
Inside Bay Area

FAIRFIELD- An unknown man fatally gunned down an off-duty Richmond police officer moments after she left a memorial service in Fairfield on Friday afternoon -- touching off a statewide Amber Alert in a rapidly moving search for the gunman.

Authorities did not release the name of the victim, a 28-year-old Suisun City resident, because her family had not been notified Friday night.

"I am completely shocked and horrified by this tragic event," said Richmond Police Chief Chris Magnus, reached out-of-state Friday night. "We are all just sick about this loss, this horrific crime, and we will do everything in our power to assist the investigation."

Fairfield police said the gunman was a black man in his 30s standing 5-feet-7 or 5-feet-8 and weighing from 175 to 200 pounds.

He had short or shaved hair and was wearing a dark leather jacket.

Police said they did not know the relationship between suspect and victim, if any. He fled in a green 1997 Ford Taurus with a California license plate 5UUD526. The description of the car was broadcast on Amber Alert signboards throughout the state.

The victim had attended a service at the Fairfield Community Center at 1000 Kentucky St. for two children killed Nov. 10 in a car crash on Highway 12.

As the service ended, about 2:50 p.m., witnesses saw the victim leave the building with a man, Fairfield Police Lt. Tony Shipp said.

"People saw them walking out together," Shipp said. "The same individuals then heard shots being fired."

After a confrontation in the community center parking lot, the gunman shot the victim several times in the upper torso and at least once in the head, Shipp said. She died at the scene.

The shooting happened barely 150 yards from the police department. Police responded quickly, but when officers arrived, the suspect had fled in the Ford Taurus.

Moments after the shooting, Fairfield officers following in the suspect's direction of flight found a .45 caliber, semi-automatic hand gun that witnesses say someone threw from the suspect vehicle a few blocks from the community center.

MediaNews staff writers Paula King and Jennifer Gentile contributed to this report.

"Richmond is a small police department. We have about 160 police officers. We see each other every day and know each other on a first name basis," Richmond police Lt. Mark Gagan said. "This is devastating to us. We are in shock."

Gagan said federal and local authorities, including detectives from Richmond, worked into the night to identify suspect and motive.

"There are a lot of questions about the motive," Gagan said. "We don't know who did it or why."

Both attended the service, police said. The officer was attending services for Demari Jermaine Hutchinson, 12, and Immanuel Kayne Hutchinson-Callison, 7. Police did not release what relationship, if any, the officer had with the children.

Police ask anyone with information about the car or the suspect to call Fairfield Police at 707-428-7300.

MediaNews staff writers Paula King and Jennifer Gentile contributed to this report.

Copyright 2006 MediaNews Group, Inc. and ANG Newspapers
All Rights Reserved

Full story: Off-duty Calif. officer killed in shooting

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