Monday, October 15, 2012
Authorities today released the name of a 24-year-old Navy man shot by police gunfire over the weekend after he allegedly raised an assault rifle toward officers at the Horton Plaza-apartment building where he lives.
Esteban Nandin, who serves on the San Diego-based frigate USS Gary, was recovering from gunshot wounds to his upper torso at a Hillcrest trauma center this afternoon and may be arraigned in his hospital room later this week, according to police.
Shortly before 3 a.m. Sunday, officers went to a six-story residential complex just south of Horton Plaza on a report that a man wearing a tan military-style tactical vest and gas mask was walking around the building and grounds with a rifle in his hands, SDPD Lt. Jorge Duran said.
The patrol personnel entered the lobby of the building and, as one of them opened the door to a stairwell leading to a garage, spotted the armed suspect, the lieutenant said.
When Nandin saw the officers, he allegedly began to raise the rifle towards them, prompting the patrolman closest to him to fire two rounds from his service pistol.
The wounded suspect then retreated into the stairwell. Officers repeatedly called out to him to surrender as they radioed for backup, including a SWAT team, and took up positions around the complex.
Almost an hour later, Nandin emerged from the building, unarmed and bleeding, through a side exit leading to Third Avenue. He was taken into custody and transported to UCSD Medical Center for wounds that were not considered life-threatening.
Investigators found a loaded assault rifle, handgun, gas mask and military vest in the stairwell where the shooting took place, according to Duran.
Police did not immediately release the name of the 18-year department veteran who opened fire on the suspect.
It was unclear why Nandin, who lives by himself, allegedly was carrying the rifle and military gear, though investigators believe he may have been under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the lieutenant said.
The suspect apparently had been socializing at his residence with a friend late Saturday evening, according to Duran.