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Gunman scare at VA hospital in North Hills

June 4, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
LAPD officers searched the VA hospital in North Hills on Tuesday after a report of a man with a gun, but after searching the facility all morning, no gunman was found.

Authorities responded to the Veterans Administration Sepulveda Ambulatory Care Center, 16111 Plummer St., at about 8:30 a.m. after two patients said they saw someone with what appeared to be a gun. Part of the hospital was placed on lockdown, while other areas were evacuated as a precaution.

"They just told us not to go outside. They didn't even tell us there was a guy with a gun," said witness Mike Franco.

Police say no threat was made. Officers methodically searched the 220,000 square-foot facility, aided by medical personnel.

Police surrounded the area and helicopters searched from above. Complicating the process were the underground tunnels that connect the buildings. Police had to search those as well.

After six hours, the search was over. Police say they did not find any weapons or anyone who matched the description of the person being sought.

While that search was going on, VA police saw a man they say appeared suspicious going into a nursing facility at the other end of the campus.

"[The man] had barricaded himself in a bathroom. The officers engaged the subject and we had an officer-involved shooting. No persons were injured," said VA Police Chief Ed Casey.

Because the officer-involved shooting happened at a federal facility, the FBI is investigating the incident. Officials are considering it a separate, unrelated incident.

Streets in the area were closed for hours due to the ongoing investigation.


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