Officials said that nighttime gunfire disabled a police vehicle in San Bernardino, but the officers were uninjured and returned fire.

SAN BERNARDINO — In what police are calling an ambush attack, nighttime gunfire disabled a police vehicle in San Bernardino, but the officers were unhurt and returned fire, police said.

Moments later in a separate shooting, gunfire struck the driver of an SUV, causing it to crash into a home. Police say it’s the city’s 25th homicide this year.

In the first incident, officers estimated that about 10 shots were fired at them at about 8:45 p.m. near the Terrace Motel along Foothill Boulevard near Meridian Avenue, near the city’s border with Rialto.

The officers were in an unmarked vehicle in an alley, said Lt. Rich Lawhead. They exited the vehicle to return fire.

“They ran in a southbound direction to a wall of a motel called the Terrace Hotel. They then ran through the parking lot of the Terrace Hotel and out here onto Foothill where they encountered two of our officers,” Lawhead said.

An officer fired on one of the men, hitting him, while another suspected gunman tried to enter into a motel room, Lawhead said. He was taken into custody. A third man was later found in a nearby mobile home park.

Police had swarmed the area, cordoning off streets and searching with ground and helicopter units.

The department is on a “modified alert” to staff the scene accordingly.

Foothill is closed from Macy Street to Meridian for an undetermined amount of time.

The condition of the suspect who was shot is unclear.

The second shooting happened shortly after 9 p.m. on Olive and F streets. Police say that shooting was a  car-to-car shooting.

The driver of a white SUV was traveling north on F Street when shots rang out from another vehicle, striking him three times. The driver, whose identity is being withheld pending next-of-kin notification, crashed his SUV through a chain-link fence and into a home. He was taken to St. Bernardine Medical Center, where he later died.

Several people at the scene claimed they had seen what happened but refused to speak to the police.

No arrests have been made or suspects identified in the homicide.

Rich Brooks contributed to this report.

Tribune News Service


STATEMENT: The NPDF is again outraged at the increased assassination attempts upon law enforcement officials nationwide and condemns the attempted ambush on San Bernardino officers on April 29, 2016. In response, NPDF officials will be contacting their Police Chief to offer the posting of a $10,000 reward for public information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspects who shot at the officers.  

Joseph Occhipinti
Founder & Executive Director