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CHP officer fatally shoots husband

February 22, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
Authorities say a California Highway Patrol officer shot and killed her husband in Compton. An investigation is under way.The officer has not been charged and remains free pending the outcome of the investigation.

The female officer reported the shooting herself. She told investigators she shot her husband Saturday night on the 400 block of Amantha Avenue after an argument. She claims during the argument her husband became verbally and physically combative. She continued on to her parents' Compton home before calling police.

"There was a domestic dispute that turned aggressive between the victim and the suspect," said Deputy Art Spencer, L.A. County Sheriff's Department. "She was able to produce a handgun, at which time she did shoot the suspect, her husband."

Marcus Lavar Lemons, 31, was pronounced dead at the scene after being shot once in the chest. The couple was married about two years ago.

Relatives and a former fiancée of the victim say Lemons was not violent or abusive. They say he would not hurt anyone.

Authorities say it does appear the officer acted in self-defense.

The officer has been with the CHP for about two years.

"You have a CHP off-duty officer. So she is not a flight risk," said Steve Whitmore, Los Angeles County Sheriff's spokesperson. "We know who she is. The agency involved knows who she is. So that's absolutely not unusual at all."

"But more importantly, it is also stemming from an alleged domestic violence incident. So we're right now in the process of ferreting this out. We're going to do a thorough investigation," continued Whitmore.

Sheriff's detectives say the investigation is ongoing and they will present their finding to the District Attorney's Office, where prosecutors will decide whether to charge the woman with a crime.

Eyewitness News reporter Subha Ravindhran contributed to this report.


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