Officer Wounded in Shooting at LAPD Station

The LAPD officer was shot seven times and remained hospitalized Tuesday in "great spirits"

By Jason Kandel, Andrew Blankstein, Beverly White, Kate Larsen and Willian Avila
|  Tuesday, Apr 8, 2014  |  Updated 11:27 AM EDT
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A Los Angeles police officer survived being shot seven times by a gunman who walked into a police station lobby and opened fire. Kate Larsen reports from Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 11 on Monday, April 7, 2014

A Los Angeles police officer survived being shot seven times by a gunman who walked into a police station lobby and opened fire. Kate Larsen reports from Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 11 on Monday, April 7, 2014

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Gunman Opens Fire in LAPD Station Lobby

A man walked into a Los Angeles Police Department station lobby with a "complaint" and opened fire, striking an officer seven times. Officers returned fire, leaving the shooter critically injured. Beverly White reports from Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 11 on Monday, April 7, 2014.
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An officer shot multiple times by a gunman at a Los Angeles Police Department station remained hospitalized and was in "great spirits" Tuesday as authorities released more details about the shooting.

Police confirmed early Tuesday that the officer was not wearing a protective vest when he was shot seven times by a man Monday night who entered the LAPD's West Traffic Division station in the Mid-City area. Initial reports indicated he was wearing the vest, but investigators later determined that was not the case.

Two desk officers, including the one who was hit, returned fire in the lobby and wounded the gunman, police said.

The officer, a seven-year veteran of the LAPD, was shot seven times, officials said. He was taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where he was expected to survive.

"He is in great spirits," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said outside the hospital. "Remarkable young man. Very, very lucky."

The gunman was also taken to Cedars-Sinai in critical condition, police said.

"Our interview with the officer determined that he was not wearing that vest, making this even more miraculous that he was not killed," said LAPD Sgt. Barry Montgomery.

Details about why the gunman fired were not immediately available. LAPD Cmdr. Dennis Kato
said the gunman had an unspecificied complaint. The gunman had parked in a bank parking lot and walked into the lobby.

The station has no metal detector in the lobby.

The shooter's semi-automatic pistol was recovered inside the lobby, police said.

A bomb squad team checked a vehicle believed to be connected to the gunman, officials said.

"Luckily our officers reacted the way they were trained to and were wearing the proper body armor, and I think that’s why they’re going to survive this attack," Kato said Monday night.

Police said a meeting was underway in a community room at the station at the time of the shooting. No one was hurt. The people who attended were being questioned, police said.

Both directions of Venice Boulevard, between La Brea Avenue and Rimpau Boulevard, were shut down for an investigation, police said in a tweet.

Tributes, meanwhile, began pouring in for the officer on Twitter.

"Prayers to the injured Officer-LAPD," Wilshire Division officers tweeted. "This will be a lengthy investigation thru the night. Please don't attempt to drive in the area."

"Get well brother," tweeted Honolulu Police Officer Walter Gouveia. "Our prayers are with you."

A gunman ambushed LAPD detectives last year outside the Wilshire station, the scene of Monday's shooting.

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