Errant police bullet strikes 56-year-old man

PoliceOne Staff Report
(BAKERSFIELD, Calif.) -- The police department and a shooting review board will convene tomorrow over the accidental shooting of a 56-year-old man who was slightly wounded by an errant bullet shot by a police officer last week, according to authorities.

The man, Avin Ellison of Shafter, was standing near the magazine rack in Albertson's store on Oct. 17 when the bullet struck a plate glass window about eight feet from ground level and deflected downward, striking him.

He was taken to Mercy Hospital where he was treated and released. Ellison would not comment on the shooting other than to say he was exploring his legal options, the Bakersfield Californian reported.

Officer Ryan Newman, who has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the internal review, had intended to fire at suspected car thief Rafael Araque, whom he believed was trying to run him over., Sgt. Bob Bivens told the Californian.

At about 5:30 p.m. Newman saw Araque driving westbound on Rosedale Highway in a stolen Oldsmobile.

Araque reportedly struck a car while turning northbound on Allen Road at which point the officer got out of his car and attempted to arrest the suspect. Araque then backed up and attempted to pull back into the northbound lane where Newman was standing, police said. It was at this time that the officer fired three rounds thinking that his life was in danger, according to Bivens. Araque then backed the car into the intersection where he crashed it. Police said he then fled on foot, but was arrested two hours later.

Back to previous page