Teen mom, 18, with five-month old son, was left brain dead after being shot in back of head by school safety officer as she drove away from fight near Millikan High School in Long Beach Monday
Mona Rodriguez was was struck by a bullet while fleeing the school in a car driven by her boyfriend, the father of her child, whose brother was also in the car
Witnesses allege that Rodriguez and her child’s father, Rafeul Chowdhury, 20, and his 16-year-old brother on Monday were involved in a fight with a 15-year-old female student
An area school’s district Safety Officer observed the 15-year-old student fighting with another girl and two males, a block from the school
As the Safety Officer approached, the trio jumped into a silver sedan and tried to flee the scene, with Chowdhury at the wheel
The Safety Officer who has not been named, fired into the fleeing car, hitting the female passenger in the back of the head
None of the people in the car were students at the school and the cause of the altercation has not been revealed
Giving a different account Chowdhury, who allegedly was a participant in the beat down and the driver of the getaway car, said the officer gave no warning before shooting
Rodriguez is not expected to survive, according to her family, who are pleading with the hospital to keep her on life support
Long Beach Police are investigating the officer’s use of lethal force and the school safety officer, who has not been named, has been placed on leave
Chowdhury and his younger brother are currently being investigated for their alleged involvement in the fight, police said
District School Superintendent Jill Baker said safety officers are ‘highly trained and held accountable to the established standards in their profession’
Authorities in Long Beach, California are investigating the use of lethal force by a school Safety Officer who fired into the window of a car fleeing the scene of a fight, leaving one occupant with grievous injuries.
Cell phone video captured the harrowing moment a teenage mother from California was shot in the back of the head by a school safety officer, leaving her brain dead.
Mona Rodriguez, 18, is not expected to survive, according to her family, who are pleading with the hospital where she is being treated to keep her on life support.
Rodriguez, who has a five-month-old son, was shot as she drove away from the scene of a fight near Millikan High School in Long Beach on Monday.
That afternoon, Rodriguez and her two male companions had gotten into a fight with a 15-year-old female student, about a block from the school
She was struck by a bullet while fleeing the scene in a car driven by her 20-year-old boyfriend, Rafeul Chowdhury, the father of her child, Chowdhury’s 16-year-old brother was also in the car.
Witnesses say the victim and her party are not students at the school. They allege that Mona Rodriguez, the injured girl and her two males, her child’s father Rafeul Chowdhury, 20, and his 16-year-old brother were at the school to fight a 15-year-old girl.
The school Safety Officer observed the 15-year-old female student fighting with another female and two males in front of the school.
However, as the Safety Officer approached, the trio jumped into a silver sedan and tried to flee the scene, with teen mom’s 20-year-old boyfriend Chowdhury, at the wheels.
He drew his gun and fired through the window of the fleeing car, hitting the female passenger in the back of the head.
None of the people in the car were students at the school.
Chowdhury and his younger brother are currently being investigated for their alleged involvement in the fight, police told KTLA.
Video shows the officer fire two shots at the car, which nearly hits him as it speeds out of the parking lot. Chowdhury was driving the vehicle.
Long Beach Police are investigating the officer’s use of lethal force. The school safety officer, who has not been named, has been placed on paid administrative leave.
Superintendent Jill Baker told KTLA that safety officers are ‘highly trained and held accountable to the established standards in their profession.’
Rodriguez’s family demanded justice Wednesday outside the school. The family hopes criminal charges are brought against the officer.
Her family and friends gathered outside Long Beach Memorial Medical Center for a candlelight vigil on Wednesday night after learning that doctors planned to take the gravely injured woman off life support, reported ABC7.
‘They’re trying to take my sister away,’ said Oscar Rodriguez, Mona’s brother.
‘At first they had told me that I would be able to make the decision, and now they’re taking that from me.’
Alex Cervantes, Mona’s cousin, told reported she did not deserve to get shot.
‘She might have been doing something she wasn’t supposed to, but she was unarmed,’ he said.
Luis Carrillo, a family attorney, called on prosecutors to bring charges against the officer who shot Rodriguez.
‘This officer should be in jail right now,’ he said at the vigil.
‘The mother is suffering, every family member and friend is suffering.’
Speaking outside the school on Wednesday afternoon, Chowdhury told reporters that the officer had threatened his girlfriend and the 15-year-old girl she had been fighting with pepper spray.
He claimed that the girls stopped fighting, and that the officer did not warn them he would use his gun before firing. ‘All we did is just got in the car and left,’ Chowdhury said.
‘He never told us to stop anytime soon, and the way he shot us, it wasn’t right.’
KTLA reported that Chowdhury added that he and Rodriguez had been trying to have a child for some time.
‘Now we do, and she [Rodriguez]’s gone,’ he said. ‘I just got to step up now and play the mother and the father role, and keep my son strong.’
Civil rights activist Najee Ali also spoke outside the school on Wednesday.
‘There’s no excuse, no justification for this officer shooting in the rear passenger-side window of a car with a woman who’s unarmed. Everyone in the car was unarmed,’ he said.
‘The fact is, he shot at someone in the passenger seat with no regard for anyone’s life in the car.’
‘The only way we stop these safety officers from shooting unarmed people and killing them is by having them prosecuted and held accountable for what they’ve done wrong to members of the community,’ Ali said.
The family have launched up a GoFundMe page to help cover funeral and legal expenses, and to help support Rodriguez’s son.
‘Mona is leaving behind her mom, 4 brothers, and her sister but most importantly she’s leaving behind her 5 month old baby boy Isael’, the page reads.
‘She was smart, beautiful, loving and anyone who knew her knew how big her heart was, how full of life she was and how much she loved her family but most especially her son who was her entire life, pride and joy,’ Yessica Loza, Rodriguez’s cousin wrote on the page.
‘We are all heart broken and in pain never did we imagine we would loose[sic] her like this or so soon she had her entire life ahead of her and because of a careless act done by a school safety guard a 5 month old baby boy was left without a mother and we all lost someone we loved so much.’