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Calif. officer shoots, kills, driver while clinging to car hood

The Associated Press

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SACRAMENTO - Two people were charged Tuesday with robbery and car-jacking, a day after a dramatic shooting in which a police officer shot and killed a driver of a fleeing car while clinging to its hood.

The officer, Kevin Howland, was treated for a bruised knee and ankle after the shooting Monday afternoon in a crowded outdoor shopping mall in Sacramento's Natomas Marketplace, Sgt. Terrell Marshall said Tuesday.

Three surviving suspects were arrested after the car hit a palm tree near a fast-food restaurant. A 16-year-old male and an 18-year-old male were charged Tuesday and the third suspect, an 18-year-old woman, was later released, Marshall said.

Howland, 32, was called to the shopping center to investigate a vehicle reportedly involved in an armed robbery less than two miles away, Marshall said. Officers were later able to link the suspects to an attempted car-jacking and a bus-stop armed robbery earlier Monday.

As Howland walked toward the car, the driver backed up, ramming Howland's squad car, then swerved forward, throwing Howland onto the hood.

"In fear, obviously for his life, he fired several rounds from his service weapon," Marshall said. Eight bullet holes scarred the windshield.

Police were investigating whether the suspects fired back, or if guns were waved or fired from a second vehicle.

The driver's body remained in the wrecked car through the afternoon as police investigated. He was later identified as Edward Timothy Gallegos, 18.

Hiroko Goto dove under a picnic table at the fast food restaurant a few yards from where the car had crashed.

"It didn't feel scary, because it just seems so unreal," she said. "It's like 'CSI: New York,' or something like that."



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