San Bernardino, CA
The officers involved in a shootout that left two terrorists dead on December 2, 2015, in the wake of the attack in San Bernardino, were officially cleared by the District Attorney’s office last week.
Subsequent to the massacre at the Inland Regional Center that left 14 people dead and 22 injured, terror suspects Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, were pursued into a neighborhood of homes and warehouses, where a gun battle erupted between twenty-two police officers from various agencies and the suspects. The shoot-out took place along San Bernardino Avenue between Tippecanoe Avenue and Mountain View Avenue in San Bernardino.
The scene was described in the report as chaotic, reading, “During the shootout, the suspects fired about 80 rifle rounds and 1 handgun round and law enforcement fired about 440 rounds from rifles, shotguns, and handguns.
“Numerous unexpended rounds of ammunition, fired cartridge casings, fired shotgun shells, and bullets and bullet fragments were discovered inside and around vehicles, on the streets, and in residential yards. Multiple nearby homes and civilian cars were struck by bullets.”
When the gunshots ceased, Farook and Malik lay dead. Autopsy reports revealed Farook had 27 gunshot entry wounds. The bullets entered his chin and neck, chest, thighs, legs, arms, feet and buttocks. Malik, who never exited the vehicle, succumbed to a combined 15 gunshot wounds. Both terror suspects were heavily armed.
Clearing the twenty-two officers involved in the shootout, the report read, “. . . use of deadly force was a proper exercise of his right of self-defense and the defense of others and therefore his actions were legally justified.”
The report determined, “The officers involved in this incident demonstrated an extraordinary amount of bravery. Decisions made by the officers involved in following the suspects and attempting to stop them certainly saved more innocent lives.”
It continued, “Faced with two heavily armed suspects who had already executed fourteen innocent unarmed civilians and critically injured twenty-two others, the officers involved put their lives at risk to prevent what may have been a second mass shooting as evidenced by the fact that the suspects appeared to be driving back to the IRC area and had reloaded.”
In the final analysis, despite the fact that the suspects were heavily armed and “completely reckless in shooting at law enforcement on a crowded residential street,” no additional civilians or law enforcement were killed thanks to the efforts of local law enforcement.
To view the report in detail, including officer statements and suspect autopsy details, visit: sbcountyda.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=NPMMvbaQpvg%3d&portalid=8.