Suspect dead after placing gun to child's head at end of daylong barricade in Lancaster

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Thursday, December 22, 2022
Suspect dead after daylong barricade with child in Lancaster
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A suspect was fatally shot by deputies after a barricade situation that lasted nearly 20 hours in Lancaster, during which he held his infant at gunpoint, officials said Thursday.

LANCASTER, Calif. (KABC) -- A suspect was fatally shot by deputies after a barricade situation that lasted nearly 20 hours in Lancaster, during which he held his infant at gunpoint, officials said Thursday.

The man, identified as Fernando Fierro, barricaded himself inside his mobile home in Lancaster early Wednesday morning after leading California Highway Patrol officers on a high-speed chase late Tuesday night, shooting at officers and pointing a gun at his baby's head, authorities said.

He stayed in the home with his infant all day as the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department attempted to convince him to surrender safely.

The barricade ended around 9 p.m. Wednesday. According to the LASD, Fierro placed a gun to the child's head while they tried to communicate with him, prompting deputies to open fire.

The child was not harmed, but the 44-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene. Officials say a firearm was recovered.

According to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Fierro had a long criminal history that dates back to 1998.

He spent time in and out of jail over the last few years for crimes including resisting or deterring an officer with threats or violence and assault with a deadly weapon. He was discharged from parole on Jan. 26 of this year.

The deadly barricade situation began Tuesday night when officers spotted a white Kia SUV traveling at a reported 132 mph along the 14 Freeway near Via Princessa at 11:44 p.m. That's when CHP officers began pursuing the suspect in a chase that spanned several freeways.

CHP said the suspect called the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and told the dispatch team he was armed and had an infant in the car.

"He also said that he would shoot at CHP officers if we did not disengage in the pursuit," a CHP spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said at 12:47 a.m., the suspect shot at officers near 17th Street E and Avenue Q in the Palmdale area. No officers were struck.

The chase ended when the suspect drove to his home at the Lido Estates Mobile Home Community in Lancaster and locked himself in.

"The suspect exited the vehicle with the infant child, had the handgun pointed to the infant's head and slowly walked away from our officers," CHP said.

After barricading himself inside the house for hours, the only message he communicated during the day was a note posted in the window asking for diapers for his son.

It's unclear if the diapers were provided, but authorities attempted to deliver a cellphone to the residence via robot to open up lines of communication.

"We want to end this peacefully," Deputy Miguel Meza said earlier in the day. "We want to see his side of the story. See what's going on in his mind. We want the baby to be safe, that's our main concern. His safety and the baby's safety is our main concern."

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