17-Year-Old Commits Suicide Using Deputy’s Gun

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A 17-year-old girl died on Sunday evening, March 24, 2024 at the Industry Station of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in Industry, California, after an altercation led her to discharge a deputy’s firearm.

The incident occurred shortly after 7:40 p.m., following what was reported as a family disturbance that precipitated the teenager’s visit to the station.

The young girl, identified as Johanna Gonzalez, approached the station’s lobby at 150 Hudson Avenue and knocked on the door. Sheriff’s Lieutenant Art Spencer reported that two deputies responded by opening the door to the lobby.

The youth abruptly entered the lobby and seized one of the deputy’s firearms from its holster. A scuffle broke out between the deputies and the armed minor. During the encounter, the juvenile managed to shoot herself, detailed the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in a formal statement.

The girl was declared dead at the location by responding paramedics. There were no other civilians in the lobby at that time.

Before the incident, at approximately 7:25 p.m., officers had been called to a domestic dispute at the La Puente residence of Gonzalez’s foster family, located roughly a mile from the police station, in the 300 block of Clintwood Avenue. 

The Sheriff’s Department stated in a written release, “The foster parents of the juvenile indicated that she appeared to be in the midst of a mental health emergency. When deputies arrived, the minor walked away from the scene.”

On Tuesday, March 26, the County of Los Angeles Medical Examiner ruled the young girl’s death a suicide.

The family’s lawyer has expressed a desire to conduct an independent inquiry into the details of her death. “It’s difficult for me to accept that she could overpower a deputy and unholster their weapon, given her stature and physical strength,” Delaney Miller conveyed to a local media outlet, also noting the girl was in the care of her aunt and uncle.

The Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau is encouraging individuals with any relevant information to come forward and contact them.

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