OAKLAND (CBS SF)— An Oakland police officer responding to a report of an armed robbery near a downtown restaurant on Wednesday night shot and injured a teenager who wasn’t involved in the robbery, Police Chief Howard Jordan said Thursday.
“The outcome of this incident was unfortunate for all involved and will get the review it needs,” Jordan.
Jordan said the incident began at about 9:55 p.m. Wednesday when police received a report that a female employee at the popular Le Cheval restaurant at 1007 Clay St. had been robbed at knifepoint near the eatery.
He said the person who reported the robbery described the suspects as three black males between the ages of 22 and 26 on bicycles, and said one was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt.
The witness called back several times to report that he was following three males he believed to be the suspects, and that one appeared to be a teenager, the chief said.
In one call, at 10:04 p.m., the witness said the suspects appeared to be attempting to assault or rob a victim, and in another call at 10:07 p.m., he said the suspects were assaulting someone, Jordan said.
The chief said that when four officers arrived in the area shortly after the final phone call, the witness directed them to three males.
Jordan said that when the officers approached the males in the 1000 block of Jefferson Street, a block away from Le Cheval, one of the officers shot one of the youths, saying later that he had perceived a threat.
Jordan said today he could not yet disclose what the threat was because details of the confrontation are still being investigated.
He said the young male was shot in the face and suffered a graze wound to his lower right jaw. He was treated for his injuries at a hospital and has since been released.
Jordan said investigators later determined that the three young males, including the person who was shot, were not involved in the robbery near Le Cheval and were all 15 or 16 years old. They were not armed, he said.
They were detained briefly but were then released, he said.
Jordan said the shooting is an example of “the tense situations
officers face every day when they’re called upon to intervene.”
Although the witness reported seeing two other potential robberies, Jordan said the only robbery in that area on Wednesday night was the one near Le Cheval.
However, he said there have been several other robberies in that neighborhood in recent weeks.
Although only one officer fired at the young male, two of the other three officers who responded also had their guns out, Jordan said.
He declined to release the name of the officer who shot the teenager but said he is a veteran of the force who has worked for the Oakland Police Department for 15 to 20 years.
Jordan said it was appropriate for the officers who responded to the scene to approach the three young males who had been pointed out by the witness, but it he said the question of whether it was appropriate for the officer to shoot the teenager “will be determined later.”
The officer has been put on paid administrative leave while the incident is investigated, which is standard procedure in officer-involved shootings.
The three suspects who were allegedly involved in the armed robbery near Le Cheval are still at large, Jordan said.
(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)
(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)