LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Two former Whittier police detectives were charged with multiple felonies for their roles in a 2020 shooting that left a man paralyzed, District Attorney George Gascón announced Wednesday.
Cynthia Lopez, 34, and Salvador Murillo, 41, are accused of shooting Nicholas Carrillo on April 30, 2020, suspecting him in a robbery that occurred weeks earlier at a Walmart, according to the District Attorney's Office.
According to Gascón, the detectives were in an undercover vehicle when they spotted a vehicle in the 7700 block of Comstock Avenue believed to be linked to the earlier robbery. As they approached the vehicle, the driver -- Carrillo -- backed up his car and bumped the officers' vehicle before getting out and running away, Gascón said.
The detectives opened fire on both the vehicle and the fleeing suspect, he said.
Lopez allegedly fired shots through the rear windshield of the vehicle while Carrillo was still inside, and fired twice more as he ran away on foot, but missed him, according to Gascón. Both detectives gave chase on foot, and as Carrillo tried to climb over a six-foot fence, Murillo allegedly fired again, striking Carrillo twice in the back.
"One shot severed his spinal cord, paralyzing him from the waist down," the district attorney said.
Gascón said Carrillo was unarmed, and no weapons were found inside his vehicle.
Lopez was charged with two felony counts of assault under color of authority and one count each of assault with a semiautomatic firearm and shooting at an occupied vehicle. Murillo was charged with two felony counts each of assault with a semiautomatic firearm causing great bodily injury and assault under color of authority causing great bodily injury.
Lopez and Murillo are no longer with the Whittier Police Department. It was unclear when they will appear in court.