December 5, 2023
A San Diego Police Division patch on an officer’s uniform. Courtesy SDPD

A person who allegedly shot and wounded a San Diego police officer following a automotive chase in a stolen car was ordered Tuesday to face trial on expenses that embrace tried homicide of a police officer.

Andrew Joseph Garcia, 21, is accused of taking pictures Officer Javier Hernandez 3 times at a Mountain View residence advanced simply earlier than 1:30 a.m., Dec. 12, 2022.

Hernandez testified throughout a preliminary listening to that he was struck twice in the precise arm and as soon as in his midsection, along with his bulletproof vest stopping that spherical. He mentioned he has not returned to obligation as he undergoes restoration from his accidents.

After allegedly taking pictures the officer, Garcia then ran to a different residence a couple of block away and was arrested there following a standoff that lasted round 9 hours.

Hernandez testified that at round 12:30 a.m., he and one other officer noticed an SUV that pulled out of a Logan Heights alleyway “fairly fast.” They ran the license plate and found the SUV was stolen.

A high-speed chase ensued each on and off the freeway, throughout which an unidentified passenger was seen tossing objects from the SUV, Hernandez testified. Sooner or later, the passenger acquired out of the car, however police continued chasing the SUV till it stopped at an residence advanced on South forty fifth Road.

Hernandez mentioned he noticed the SUV driver get out and run, and so he chased the person down a slim hall between two buildings. When he emerged from the hall, he was struck by gunfire.

Hernandez had his gun out, however didn’t hearth, based on testimony.

One of many bullets allegedly fired by Garcia entered an occupied residence unit, although the resident inside was not struck by the spherical, based on testimony.

San Diego police Officer Ryan Welch of the police division’s Air Assist Unit was in a helicopter monitoring the stolen SUV in the course of the pursuit. He testified that from his vantage level within the helicopter, he may see the SUV driver run down the residence advanced hall, then take a “taking pictures stance” earlier than the officer seems.

Video footage taken from the helicopter’s digital camera was performed in court docket and seems to indicate the shooter hearth on the officer, then stumble backwards and fall. The shooter then climbs over a number of fences earlier than attending to the road, the place he’s seen operating.

Garcia allegedly dropped his gun after the taking pictures, which San Diego police Det. Kyle Okeson testified was found to be an unserialized “ghost gun.”

Police later examined Garcia’s Instagram account and found a message wherein he sought to promote a similar-looking gun a couple of month previous to the taking pictures.

Investigators additionally found Instagram posts allegedly made by Garcia each in the course of the pursuit and after the taking pictures.

At round 1 a.m., Garcia allegedly described being chased by police and posted a message, “When you don’t hear again from me, this is perhaps it. I’m going to exit dumping.”

Later a put up from the account learn, “I wasn’t alleged to exit like this…however (expletive) that, I’m not going to sit down in a cell.”

At round 2 a.m., which prosecutors allege was about half an hour after Hernandez was shot, Garcia allegedly posted, “I killed a cop” and described being surrounded by SWAT, based on testimony.

He was arrested at round 10:15 a.m. that morning inside a residence on South forty fourth Road.

The preliminary listening to was held as police proceed to seek for a suspect in a separate, comparable taking pictures of a San Diego police officer that occurred in Metropolis Heights final week.

That officer was shot within the arm Thursday morning by a suspect who was allegedly driving a stolen car. After leaping out of the car and operating, police mentioned the suspect fled into an residence advanced then fired a number of instances on the officer.

Metropolis Information Service contributed to this text.