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Los Angeles School Guard Shot

Aired July 30, 2001 - 11:45   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LEON HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: There's word now of a situation developing in Los Angeles that we're just now hearing about, a shooting at a school at Belmont High School in Los Angeles. The word is that a police officer is now in the hospital after being shot by a 9 mm.

We understand the police are now looking for two suspects, and they believe that they may still be in the area. They believe that one may be in the school. The school's been locked down. They are now searching the area.

You see here a live picture from our affiliate KTLA of all the police that are assembling. KTLA has reported that one of the suspects may be inside.

Let's find out some more right now. We're joined on the telephone by Lt. Horace Frank with the LAPD.

Lt. Frank, what can you tell us about what's going on right now?

LT. HORACE FRANK, LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT: About 7:30 this morning, our officers assigned to Rampart Community Police Station received a radio call of shots fired at Belmont High School. The situation, based on preliminary investigation, is that one of the Los Angeles Unified School District police officers was approached in civilian attire, driving through the parking structure. Some students came up to him and advised him of some suspicious males who were acting in the parking structure. He went to the scene to investigate, at which time, one of the males produced a handgun, and a gun battle ensued between the Los Angeles Unified School District police and the suspects.

He was subsequently shot in the chest. He chased the suspects, but they were able to elude him.

Right now, we are conducting a search of the school structure and of the surrounding areas, because we believe the subjects may still be in the area.

The LAUSD officer is listed in stable condition. Fortunately for him, he was wearing his vest at the time.

HARRIS: Did the bullet actually penetrate through the vest?

FRANK: It was captured in the vest.

HARRIS: He still went and chased them after being shot in the chest?

FRANK: Absolutely.

HARRIS: That's a pretty incredible guy you've got there.

Were both of the suspects carrying weapons, do you think?

FRANK: The information that we have is just one suspect, who produced a blue steel handgun.

HARRIS: Was there any chance that any of the children that are in the school were in the area and may have been in danger?

FRANK: As of right now, we don't know how many people were actually in the immediate area of the shooting. We do know that the students that approached the off-duty officer, he was the one that went to the scene. So it doesn't appear as though there were any other individuals in the immediate area.

HARRIS: We appreciate the update, Lt. Horace Frank of the LAPD.

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