Thursday, May 03, 2007

L.A. County Sheriff's Deputy Killed in Crash (KNBC4.TV 050207)

L.A. County Sheriff's Deputy Killed in Crash
Posted: May 2nd, 2007 02:59 PM EDT

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office
Deputy Raul Gama
Story by


A Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy was killed Tuesday morning when a car crashed into his parked surveillance vehicle, according to police.

The crash occurred at about 10 a.m. in the 12000 block of Oxnard Street in North Hollywood.

County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky said the deputy was conducting surveillance from the vehicle, which was parked on the side of the street. The deputy died at a Burbank hospital.

Sheriff Lee Baca conducted a news conference at 4:30 p.m. He identified the deceased deputy as Raul Gama, who graduated from the sheriff's academy on May 1, 1987.

He was assigned to a unit that investigates cargo theft. Baca said Gama was conducting surveillance on a subject who was suspected of receiving stolen phones.

Baca said an 18-year-old motorist, identified as a student at a nearby high school, was driving west on Oxnard Street in a 2006 Honda Element, which crashed into the deputy's minivan. The Element flipped onto its side.

"He collided with such a force that the collision itself caused the death of Deputy Gama," Baca said.

Baca said Gama was the only person in the surveillance vehicle.

Baca said the driver of the Element was arrested. The sheriff said the teenager faces a felony manslaughter charge.

In 2003, Gama was awarded the department's Medal of Valor for his actions during a train derailment. One of the train's cars landed on a house in Commerce. Gama and three other deputies rescued a family from the partially collapsed house.

No comments: