San Bernardino police officer in critical condition after shootout (updated)

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A San Bernardino police training officer remains in 'very critical' condition after a shootout early Friday morning that left a suspect dead and led to the arrests of several others. 


Correction: An earlier version of this report incorrectly stated that San Bernardino Police officer Gabriel Garcia died of wounds he sustained in a shootout Friday. Garcia remains in critical condition following surgery. KPCC deeply regrets the error.

12:29 p.m.: Police officer wounded in shootout identified

The San Bernardino Police officer remains in critical condition after undergoing surgery for his wounds, according to police.

The officer, 31-year-old Gabriel Garcia, was described as "exemplary" and "a great team member and a great man" by  San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan. His father Ron Garcia is a captain on the force and a 30-year veteran of the San Bernardino police department. 

Garcia has worked for the department for more than six years and spent the majority of that time assigned to patrol, Burguan said. He has been commended for his work with anti-graffiti programs.

A vigil for Garcia will be held outside Arrowhead Regional Medical Center at 8 p.m. Friday evening, the San Bernardino Sun reports.

—KPCC Staff

11:46 a.m.: New details on identity of alleged shooter, names of arrests

Authorities identified the alleged shooter of a San Bernardino Police training officer as 38-year-old Alex Alvarado and said he had an extended arrest history.

Alvarado is accused of seriously wounding a 31-year-old training officer during an early morning shootout with police. Alvarado was killed in the exchange.

Police also identified two other men arrested in connection with the incident. Jonathan Contreras, 21, of San Bernardino, was booked on suspicion of possessing an assault rifle and a "sawed-off rifle," San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan said in a news conference. Orlando Cruz, 24, also of San Bernardino, was taken into custody on traffic warrants, Burguan said. 

Burguan said police will likely soon release the name of the officer who was shot and remains in critical condition. He said investigators have not determined why Alvarado allegedly opened fire.

"The only person who possibly could have answered that question is dead," Burguan said.

—KPCC Staff

9:30 a.m.: San Bernardino police officer in critical condition after shootout

A San Bernardino police training officer is in "very critical" condition after a shootout Friday morning. 

Police say the officer and his trainee approached six people on a street shortly after 2 a.m. when a suspect opened fire, hitting the training officer. The trainee returned fire, killing the suspect.  

The training officer - described as a 31-year-old who's been with the department for more than six years - has undergone surgery but is still in very critical condition, police said.

San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan described the injured officer as, "very well respected by his peers, very well respected by his supervisors, has a great reputation for working hard and does very good police work. Enough so that six and a half years on we trust him to be a training officer and train our new folks."

The remaining people have been taken into custody.​

Two guns were found at the scene—a revolver and an assault rifle with high-capacity magazines.

With contributions from Nick Stoffel, Ashley Bailey, and Nathan McIntire

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