Minutes after the New Year began, Bakersfield police say they responded to several calls of shots fired near apartments at 720 Terrace Way in south Bakersfield.
It's where Gabriel Gurrola lives. He says he and his brother, 26-year-old Abel Gurrola, fired about six shots to ring in 2013. Police say officers saw Abel holding a rifle. They say he refused to put it down and took off. That's when, police say, officers shot Gurrola, who later died in the hospital.
"During every New Year, there are shots fired by individuals. I think that is very typical, however, due to the enormity of the calls, sometimes we don't get there or aren't confronted by individuals with firearms,” says Greg Williamson, Bakersfield Police Chief. “So, I think that it is a very typical call on a New Year’s Eve night. However, to be confronted by somebody with a firearm is probably out of the ordinary."
Chief Williamson says officers are gathering more evidence and following leads. They will go back out to the Terrace Way apartments to recreate the scene from Tuesday morning. He says the assistant police chief and four captains are all part of a shooting review board, which will submit reports to him to determine whether the shooting was within state and federal guidelines.
Chief Williamson says the investigation could last several weeks or months.
Two Bakersfield police officers were involved in Tuesday’s shooting. Both have been placed on paid administrative leavewhile the investigation continues.
Abel Gurrola leaves behind a wife and six children. The Coroner’s office says an autopsy will be done on Monday.