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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Phone charger deflects bullet in deputy's 'life-and-death battle'

LA TimesA cellphone charger saved a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy from further injury early Tuesday after a parolee opened fire during a midnight struggle in Inglewood and the bullet glanced off the pocketed cord. It was a chance hit authorities called “miraculous.”

The suspect – described only as a parolee in his 40s – was shot and killed, but not before he fired again, officials said, grazing the deputy’s partner in the hand. Both officers were treated at area hospitals and released later in the day.

Sheriff Lee Baca said the deputy would have likely been seriously injured had the cellphone charger not blocked the bullet, sending it down her pant leg. It grazed her leg and exited out her pants.

“I have heard of a lot of things stopping rounds, but nothing that small,” sheriff’s Lt. Mike Rosson said. “It is nothing short of a miracle.”

The situation unfolded shortly after midnight as the deputies – passing through Inglewood while moving from one unincorporated area of the county to another – spotted a car with paper plates and no stickers, Rosson said.

The deputies initiated a traffic stop, and the driver pulled into a parking lot in the 3900 block of Century Boulevard. The male passenger immediately jumped out of the vehicle and made a beeline for the trunk, which he opened, Rosson said.

The deputy ordered him to stop, and moved in to pat him down. When she discovered the man had a .40 caliber handgun in his waistband, the suspect physically resisted her, Rosson said. continue reading...

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