Off Duty Officer Opens Fire On Man Who Assaulted Him In Costco.
CORONA, Calif. (AP) — An off-duty police officer opened fire inside a Costco Wholesale warehouse store, killing a man who had attacked him and wounding two others, the Corona Police Department said.
Police said Kenneth French, 32, of Riverside assaulted the LA Police Department Friday night while he was holding his young child, the police department said in a statement on Saturday. The further clarified that the officer fired his gun, hitting French and two of his relatives.
The department said two of the relatives are in critical condition in the hospital, French was killed.
The officer, who the department has yet to release the name of, was treated in the hospital for injuries, the child was uninjured.
Onlookers said they saw a man in a Mohawk arguing in the freezer department, shots rang out, then the place is said to have quickly gone into a place of pandemonium.
The officer is the only person that fired shots in the store, the department stated.
The shooting set off a stampede of frightened shoppers, other tried to find places to hide behind.
The Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement Saturday afternoon that it has launched its own investigation of the incident.
Christina Colis told the Riverside Press-Enterprise that she was in the produce area when she heard six to seven shots and hid with other shoppers in a refrigerated produce room. She said her mother saw people injured on the floor.
“I thought maybe someone dropped a bottle of wine, but then I kept hearing shots,” shopper Will Lungo told the Press-Enterprise newspaper. “An employee came in and helped us out through the emergency exit.”
Witnesses told KCAL-TV that shoppers and employees rushed to the exits. The station reported that more than 100 people were outside the store at one point. Left behind inside the store were purses, cellphones and backpacks from panicked shoppers, Corona police said.