Teen mum shot in the head by school safety officer dies

·3-min read

A teen mum who was shot in the head by a school safety officer has died from her injuries, her family says.

On September 27, the safety officer was driving near Millikan High School in Long Beach, California, when he pulled over to break up a fight between two teenagers, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Officers with the Long Beach Police Department say Mona Rodriguez, 18, was involved in the fight and tried to flee the scene in the passenger seat of a sedan.

Video footage posted online shows the safety officer approach the car and bang on the window before firing two shots as it speeds past him and through a parking lot.

Within seconds, frantic screaming can be heard as shocked bystanders hide behind what appears to be a bus.

Mona Rodriguez, 18, with her young son.
Mona Rodriguez, 18, was involved in the fight and tried to flee the scene in the passenger seat of a sedan. Source: GoFundMe

Ms Rodriguez’s family members said in a GoFundMe that the mum of a five-month-old boy was shot in the back of the head.

The 18-year-old was in critical condition at Long Beach Medical Center last week. Family members said doctors told them she was brain dead.

They told local media Ms Rodriguez would be taken off life support and announced on the GoFundMe on Wednesday that she had died.

"With a heavy heart I want to let you guys know that our beautiful Mona passed away on September 29," they wrote.

Her family said her organs would be donated because that’s “what Mona would have wanted”.

They are now urging California’s attorney general to open an independent investigation into the shooting, saying the officer should be criminally charged for his actions.

The 18-year-old in intensive care.
The 18-year-old's family said doctors told them she was brain dead. Souce: GoFundMe

“This officer had no business carrying a badge and gun,” Luis Carrillo, an attorney for Ms Rodriguez’s family, said.

“She was no imminent threat when this criminal officer went boom.”

Rafeul Chowdhury, the father of Ms Rodriguez’s young son, said he was driving the sedan and that his 16-year-old brother was in the back seat when the shots were fired. He said no one in the car was armed.

No one involved in the fight attended Millikan High School where the safety officer was based, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The safety officer is not a member of the Long Beach Police Department, which will lead the investigation into the shooting.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office is also conducting an investigation, the Press Telegram reports.

School safety officers are not permitted to fire at a moving vehicle or at fleeing suspects, according to a use-of-force policy from Long Beach Unified School District’s school safety office.

Firearms may be discharged only when reasonably necessary and justified under the circumstances, such as self-defence and the protection of others, the policy states.

A spokesman for the Long Beach Unified School District said the district was “reviewing multiple aspects” while cooperating with the police investigation.

With AP

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