Sep 29, 2012 No Comments ›› Pat Dollard
UPDATE TO ORIGINAL STORY BELOW – WITNESSES CONTRADICT AGENT: – Some eyewitnesses to a shooting Friday by a plainclothes Border Patrol agent, who claims he was forced to open fire on a woman behind the wheel of her car, are contradicting the federal officials’ version of events.
Border Patrol authorities said that the woman rammed a U.S. Border Patrol agent with a car Friday on a residential South Bay road, hurling him onto the hood of the vehicle and prompting him to fatally shoot her through the windshield in self-defense, authorities reported.
The lawman was in southwestern Chula Vista with other undercover personnel to serve a felony arrest warrant when the dark-green Honda Accord struck him in the 600 block of Moss Street about 1 p.m., according to police and federal officials.
“The agent … was hit by the vehicle and carried several hundred yards on the hood before, fearing for his life, (he) did discharge his weapon to get the vehicle to stop,” Border Patrol Deputy Chief Rodney Scott told reporters.
Area residents described hearing six to eight shots ring out. The woman, identified by her family as 32-year-old Valeria Munique Alvarado, died at the scene.
Some eyewitnesses to the incident have contradicted the Border Patrol’s account of the shooting.
“The officer never got struck by the vehicle,” said Prince Watson, who told News 8 he saw the encounter. “The vehicle was actually moving in reverse.”
Alvarado’s family members say they are demanding answers.
“I want justice!” shouted Alvarado’s husband, Gilbert Alvarado. “Whoever shot my wife… he needs to get shot. He needs to get justice served.”
Medics took the agent to a hospital. Scott said he did not know the extent of his injuries. “But he was impacted by a vehicle pretty hard,” the spokesman added.
Alvarado was not the subject of the warrant, Scott told news crews. That suspect remained at large in the late afternoon, he said.
Area resident Hector Salazar told NBC 7 San Diego he was reading his mail in his home when the deadly shooting occurred a short distance away.
“I just saw an agent with a gun walking toward the car and yelling,” he said. “But the person inside didn’t respond.”
The Chula Vista Police Department was investigating the case in conjunction with the Border Patrol and U.S. Inspector General’s Office, CVPD Lt. Lon Turner said.
CHULA VISTA, Calif. – A Border Patrol agent fatally shot a 32-year-old mother of five Friday in suburban San Diego as he rode on the hood of her car after she ran into him, authorities and family members said.
The agent fired after being driven several hundred yards on the hood, Chula Vista police Capt. Gary Wedge told The Associated Press. The woman was later identified in a police statement as Valeria Alvarado.
The shooting occurred about five miles north of the Mexican border as plainclothes agents were looking to serve a felony warrant in the area to someone other than Alvarado, Border Patrol Deputy Chief Rodney Scott told U-T San Diego.
Scott said the agent was stuck atop the car as Alvarado drove.
“Fearing for his life, he discharged his weapon to get the vehicle to stop,” Scott said. No other agents fired.
Alvarado was declared dead at the scene, and the agent was taken to a hospital. His injuries were not clear.
After talking to investigators, family members including her husband and cousin told U-T San Diego that Alvarado was a housewife and mother of five children ranging from ages 3 to 17 who went by the name Monique.
“I love her to the fullest. That’s my heart,” husband Gilbert Alvarado said. “Where’s the evidence my wife threatened a trained officer? I want justice.”
Family members said Valeria Alvarado grew up in Chula Vista where the shooting took place but had been living about five miles away in the Southcrest neighborhood of San Diego, and they did not know why she was in her former hometown.
Hector Salazar, one of several neighbors who witnessed the incident, said he saw a man in civilian clothes on the hood of a black car aiming a gun at the windshield.
Salazar told U-T San Diego the man started pulling the trigger, and he heard about five shots. Moments later, other plainclothes agents approached the car, he said.
The person named in the warrant the agents were serving was not apprehended, Scott said.
The FBI and Chula Vista police are investigating.