LASD deputy involved shooting when car theft suspect leads them on a chase
On September 11, 2021, at approximately 1:00 PM, deputies assigned to the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station responded to the Lancaster National Soccer Center located at 43000 30th Street East, Lancaster, regarding a call of a vehicle theft. The victim, a 20 year-old woman, indicated she was involved in a one-week dating relationship with Edwin Pizarro, a 29 year-old man. She reported that while at the Soccer Center she began arguing with Pizarro. Pizarro assaulted her, forcefully took her car keys and cell phone, and fled the scene in his white Chevy Tahoe. He later returned on foot and stole the victim’s vehicle from the parking lot. Responding deputies documented the incident in a police report.
Several hours later, deputies located Pizarro seated inside his white Chevy Tahoe, parked on the side of the road near the area of 42nd Street West and Avenue L, in the city of Lancaster. Deputies attempted to detain Pizarro but Pizarro accelerated away from them, at a high rate of speed and refused to stop. Deputies pursued Pizarro for approximately nine miles. As a result of Pizarro’s dangerous driving movements, the pursuit was terminated southbound on the 14 freeway at the Palmdale Boulevard exit.
As the vehicle pursuit terminated, a Sheriff’s helicopter arrived overhead, and California Highway Patrol units continued the vehicle pursuit. Pizarro circled the area of division Street and East Avenue R, in the city of Palmdale, for several minutes. Deputies successfully deployed a spike strip on Pizarro’s vehicle, puncturing both driver’s side tires. At that point, the California Highway Patrol units terminated their vehicle pursuit. Two Sheriff’s patrol units attempted to reengage in the vehicle pursuit as they drove eastbound on East Avenue R, toward 5th Street East, behind Pizarro.
The deputies stopped their vehicles in the eastbound lanes of East Avenue R, and awaited authorization to reengage in the vehicle pursuit. Pizarro suddenly initiated a U-turn and drove at a high rate of speed westbound directly at both Sheriff’s patrol units. The first unit was able to avoid being struck by quickly driving out of the path of Pizarro’s vehicle. The second unit was unable to drive out of Pizarro’s vehicle path, and the driver deputy discharged his firearm at Pizarro. Almost simultaneously, Pizarro collided head-on with that deputy’s patrol vehicle, causing both vehicles’ airbags to deploy.
As a result of the collision, the driver deputy was injured and trapped inside the patrol vehicle. He believed Pizarro was going to ram the patrol vehicle a second time, he discharged his firearm again and a second-deputy involved shooting occurred.
The passenger deputy was also injured as a result of the collision, but was able to exit his patrol vehicle. Believing Pizarro was going to ram the patrol vehicle again, he discharged his firearm and a third deputy-involved shooting occurred. After the third deputy-involved shooting, Pizarro remained in the driver seat of his vehicle and appeared to be unconscious. Assisting deputies formed a tactical rescue team and approached Pizarro’s vehicle. Deputies rescued Pizarro from his vehicle and rendered first aid until paramedics arrived. Los Angeles County Fire Department personnel arrived and treated Pizarro for minor injuries. Pizarro was transported by ambulance to a local hospital where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries. He was subsequently cleared for booking.
Investigators were unable to determine if Pizarro was struck by gunfire or if the minor injuries were sustained as a result of the head-on collision.
Both deputies involved in the shooting were transported to a local hospital and treated for non-life threatening injuries as a result of the traffic collision.
The victim’s stolen vehicle was later recovered in the Rosamond area.