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8-year-old girl hit in police shootout

March 9, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
A 8-year-old girl is recovering after she was shot in the chest during a shootout between police and drug suspects in North University Park.She is recovering from surgery for a bullet wound to her chest and she is expected to survive.

The LAPD says narcotics officers were following three men in a black Toyota sedan in North University Park near USC just before 7 p.m. Sunday. The vehicle turned down an alley between Westmoreland and Orchard avenues and suddenly stopped, according to authorities.

One of the suspects got out of the vehicle and started shooting at the officers. Police then returned fire.

They say one of the suspects' bullets hit the 8-year-old girl standing nearby.

"She was standing outside near a tree just down the street when the shots rang out, and then she was struck in the chest," said LAPD Captain Matt Blake. "We're just so grateful that she's OK."

All three suspects fled in the Toyota and police are still searching for them.

Anyone with information is urged to call the LAPD at (877) LAPD-24-7.

Eyewitness News Reporters Amy Powell and Leo Stallworth contributed to this report.


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