Law Enforcement Life in General

San Jose Veteran Officer Killed by Suicidal Shooter After Answering Call for Help


When 14-year veteran San Jose police officer Michael Johnson
was fatally shot Tuesday evening, he was responding to a call for help from a family member who reported a despondent drunk man, possibly suicidal, possessing one or more guns.

The SJPD community is reeling as they mourning the loss of a fellow officer who gave his life in the line of duty, on a callout to protect the safety of others.

The San Jose Mercury News has additional details.

Here’s a clip:

San Jose officers were initially called at 6:48 p.m. Tuesday by a female family member who said that [shooting suspect Scott] Dunham was intoxicated, despondent and possibly meant to harm himself or others, {SJPD Chief] Esquivel said. As the officers approached the apartment building on Senter Road and spotted a person on a balcony, they were fired upon without warning.

Police dispatch recordings show that officers told dispatchers they believed the man they were searching for had one or two handguns in the apartment.

At one point, as they approach the apartment, an officer says, “we have movement from the blinds at the apartment.”

An officer calmly reports that a male has stepped out onto the balcony, describing him as having gray hair, a gray mustache and a black T-shirt. Seconds later, the “shots fired” call can be heard, followed almost immediately by the “officer down” call.

Dispatchers immediately called for the area to be secured and put out a citywide call for assistance. Another officer reported that shots were fired at the suspect, and that he possibly “went down as well.” Esquivel confirmed the gunfire exchange and the possibility that Dunham was wounded.

“This person had the nerve, the audacity, to shoot at our officers who were on a call for assistance,” Esquivel said.

An outpouring of grief flowed from both members of the public and law enforcement agencies throughout California and across the nation Tuesday night. Hundreds of social media users sent their condolences to San Jose police through the department’s Twitter account.

WitnessLA joins San Jose in grieving for their brave officer.

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