A Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy was fatally shot in an ambush attack. The incident occurred in Palmdale, California, and has left the community reeling and law enforcement agencies on high alert as the suspect remains at large.
Deputy Ryan Clinkunbroomer, a 30-year-old field training officer, was shot on Saturday just outside the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station at the corner of Sierra Highway and Avenue Q.
According to FOX News national correspondent Bill Melugin, the deputy was “ambushed and shot in the back of his head while in his patrol car.”
BREAKING: Per law enforcement sources, a L.A. County Sheriff’s deputy was ambushed and shot in the back of his head while in his patrol car in Palmdale this evening. Deputy taken to hospital, status unknown. Suspect or suspects outstanding.
— Bill Melugin (@BillMelugin_) September 17, 2023
Melugin added that the security footage obtained by law enforcement shows a black car pulling up alongside Deputy Clinkunbroomer’s vehicle at a red light. Although the shots are not visible in the video, the black vehicle is seen driving away, while the deputy’s vehicle slowly rolls forward before coming to a stop.
Clinkunbroomer was immediately rushed to the Antelope Valley Medical Center in Lancaster, where he tragically succumbed to his injuries. His death has been confirmed by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
“I want to let to our community know Deputy Clinkunbroomer left his family tonight to serve our community. He laid everything on the line to serve us. He wore a uniform just like other LASDHQ deputies wear, driving in a police car, and he was senselessly murdered tonight,” Sheriff Robert Luna wrote.
I want to let to our community know Deputy Clinkunbroomer left his family tonight to serve our community. He laid everything on the line to serve us. He wore a uniform just like other @LASDHQ deputies wear, driving in a police car, and he was senselessly murdered tonight. pic.twitter.com/Jqc2sSB63c
— Robert Luna (@LACoSheriff) September 17, 2023
Sheriff Robert Luna spoke to the media, stating that Clinkunbroomer’s death is being investigated as a murder.
“We really need your help,” said Sheriff Robert Luna. “We need to get this guy off the street, guy or guys. He’s a public safety threat. He ambushed and killed, murdered, one of our deputies. We need your help to get him off the street.”
“Homicide investigators are aware of a video that is circulating and are analyzing that video to determine if it is related to the murder of our deputy,” said Luna.
Law enforcement sources told ABC News that all available investigative tools, including license plate readers, are being utilized to track down the suspect. However, the motive behind this heinous act remains unclear. Investigators have yet to determine whether the attack was personal, job-related, or a random act of violence.
L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn has vowed to fully back the sheriff’s department in their ongoing investigation.
“The coward who ambushed Deputy Clinkunbroomer last night is still at large and must be brought to justice soon. I am pledging all the county resources needed to find this murderer and support our deputies in the wake of this vicious attack,” Hahn said in a statement. “If you have any information that could help, I urge you to call LASD Homicide at 323-890-5500 immediately.”
ABC News reported:
Manhunt now underway
Luna said numerous local, state and federal law enforcement agencies have offered their assistance in the investigation. However, he’s pushing the public to come forward, especially those people who may have been in the area at the time of the shooting.
“Somebody knows something,” said Luna.
When asked by a reporter if the shooting may have been a targeted attack, Luna noted the investigation is still in its early stages but said “nothing is off the table.”
“I think it was a targeted act, based on what we know now, but we’re still in the extremely early stages of this investigation,” he said.
Palmdale Mayor Laura Bettencourt also spoke to reporters and asked anyone with information to come forward.