Armed robbery suspect, 15, dies after being shot by off-duty customs agent in Arcadia, authorities say

ARCADIA, Calif. (KABC) -- A 15-year-old boy died after being shot by an off-duty U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent who was allegedly attacked by the armed teen and two accomplices Friday evening in Arcadia, authorities said.

The teen, identified as Pasadena resident Darius Smith, was pronounced dead at a hospital Saturday morning, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. A second suspect, age 14, remained hospitalized with gunshot wounds that were not life-threatening.

The incident was reported at 8:13 p.m. Friday in the area of First Avenue and Colorado Boulevard, said sheriff's Deputy Caroline Rodriguez.

The customs agent was walking on a sidewalk when he was attacked from behind by the boys - two 14-year-olds and Smith, authorities said. One of the assailants allegedly repeatedly struck the agent in the head as another pointed a gun at him and demanded his property.

"The victim thought the subjects were going to rob and shoot him so he retrieved his department-issued handgun," Rodriguez said. "The victim shot at the subjects in an effort to defend himself."

According to investigators, the armed teen and one of his accomplices were struck by the agent's gunfire. The third boy, who was unharmed, fled the scene on foot.

The agent suffered bruising to his face but did not require medical attention. The agency has not commented or released the name of the agent.

The wounded suspects each sustained multiple gunshot wounds and were transported to a hospital.

Arcadia police officers recovered a handgun allegedly held by Smith at the scene, deputies said.

The boy who ran from the scene was subsequently found at a nearby home and taken into custody. He was booked at Central Juvenile Hall in Boyle Heights on suspicion of robbery.

The two 14-year-old boys' identities were withheld due to their age.

City News Service contributed to this report.
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