The shooting happened in the 3600 block of West Morningside Avenue around 1:45 a.m.
Santa Ana police say officers were searching for a man with a gun when the male suspect confronted them. Officers ordered the suspect, identified as 43-year-old John Berry Horton, to drop his gun but he refused to comply and officers opened fire.
The 43-year-old parolee was taken to UCI Medical Center where he underwent surgery.
No officers were injured during the shooting. No information on Horton's condition was released but authorities say he is expected to survive.
Horton is a documented gang member.