9 hour Calif. standoff ends with suspect arrested, hostages freed
The gunman fired at police and struck a cop in his ballistic vest, had girlfriend and daughter held hostage
INGLEWOOD, Calif. — A gunman who fired several shots at a pair of Southern California police officers, hitting one, and held two people hostage for nearly nine hours was booked Thursday on suspicion of attempted murder, a sheriff's official said.
Christopher Warsaw, 45, was being held on $1 million bail, said Los Angeles County sheriff's Deputy Guillermina Saldana.
It was not immediately clear if Warsaw had an attorney and he had not made an initial court appearance.
Warsaw was arrested late Wednesday after engaging police in a nearly nine-hour standoff after taking his girlfriend and her 14-year-old daughter hostage, authorities said. He fired at officers who responded to a family disturbance call from the home that came at 12:30 p.m.
The worst injury occurred when an Inglewood policeman was shot in his bulletproof vest. He was taken to a hospital in good condition but "in a lot of pain," police Capt. James D. Madia said.
He suffered blunt force injuries and spent Wednesday night in the hospital as a precaution but could be released Thursday, police said.
The second officer was not hit but was hurt when she fell down in the chaos that followed, Madia said. She was treated at a hospital and released.
The gunman, his girlfriend and her 14-year-old daughter all came away unharmed, police said.
The man in the home shot at the arriving officers "before they could even get to the front door," Madia said. Officers returned fire, and a video aired on KABC-TV captured more than a dozen shots being fired.
Officers pulled their wounded colleague out of the line of fire, Lt. Oscar Mejia said.
Esther Frazier, who lives across the street from the standoff, said she was baking a cake for Thanksgiving when she heard a commotion and walked outside to see police officers banging on the door of the home.
She went back inside to turn off her oven when gunfire erupted.
"There were so many gunshots, oh my God, it was like you were in a war zone," she told the Los Angeles Times. "A shot came through the screen on my door."
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press