Ventura County – Imagine the anguish of lying in a hospital bed with life-threatening injuries inflicted by a hail of police gunshots and being in such serious condition that the cops have to wait for your condition to improve before placing you under arrest.
On the other hand, imagine the confusion, stress and decision-making process experienced by Ventura Police Department Officer Sgt. Darrick Brunk, a 19-year veteran of the department when, in an effort to engage an apparent reckless driver who had driven a pickup truck into an entrance gate at the Ventura County Fairgrounds, that driver suddenly drove his truck right into him.
Those conflicting emotional states are the consequence of the alleged actions of Clemente Zamarripa-Mata, a 26-year old resident of Ventura who, on the afternoon of August 3rd, inexplicably drove his truck past security barricades at the heavily-attended County Fair, slammed into the entrance gate, and while attempting to flee the area sideswiped a bus, was forced to a halt in the traffic of a police security checkpoint.
According to the media reports filed by Cdr. Darin Schindler, Zamarripa-Mata was approached by officer but was “immediately uncooperative and suddenly accelerated backwards and collided into pickup that was stopped in the line of vehicles behind him.” In the next moment, Mata changed gears and drove directly into Sgt. Brunk, sending him into the truck’s windshield. Reacting quickly, Officer Jason Kohagen and Officer Matthew Baumann—each with 7 years of law enforcement experience—opened fire with 4 rounds, hitting Mata in the chest and shoulders, bringing the rampaging vehicle to a halt as it crashed into 7 police motorcycles.
Brunk and Mata both received emergency medical attention at the scene before being transported to Ventura County Medical Center, while “Ventura Police Major Crimes responded to the scene and took over the investigation,” Schindler reported.
Mata remains in serious but stable condition, with charges of felonious assault with a deadly weapon and attempted homicide of a peace officer currently pending his arrest.
Photo: Courtesy www.keyt.com
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