California teen gunned down by school security guard for removal from resuscitation system
A teenage mother shot dead by a school police officer in California is expected to be removed from the resuscitation system this weekend, her brother said.
The victim, identified by family members as Manuela “Mona” Rodriguez, 18, was in preparation for organ donation before being removed from the intensive care system, a decision approved by his siblings and mother his brother Iran Rodriguez said at a press conference on Friday.
“There were six of us, now there are five,” he said of his siblings.
Manuela Rodriguez is also survived by her 5-month-old baby, according to family lawyer Luis A. Carrillo.
The Long Beach Unified School District identified the officer as Eddie F. Gonzalez, hired Jan. 10. District spokesman Chris Eftychiou said Gonzalez was put on paid leave, and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and Long Beach City Police were involved in a review of the shooting.
The officer was driving a school security vehicle near Millikan High School on Monday afternoon when he came across a fight between Manuela Rodriguez and an unidentified 15-year-old girl, Long Beach police said in a statement.
Manuela Rodriguez knew the girl and started the fight, the department said. As the school officer intervened, she jumped into a car occupied by an 18-year-old man and a 16-year-old boy “also involved in the assault,” police said.
The video shows the school officer on the passenger side of the car, apparently trying to get the teens to stop or surrender, when she accelerates the tires squeak. The officer drew his gun and opened fire behind the fleeing vehicle.
Paramedics took Manuela Rodriguez to Long Beach Medical Center in critical condition, Carrillo said. .
The shooting comes as people across the country are reconsidering the effectiveness of school policing amid a broader police reform movement that has arisen in the wake of the murder of George Floyd by a City of Minneapolis in 2020.
Carrillo said the officer violated district policy, which states: “Officers should not shoot at a moving vehicle.”
NBC News could not find Gonzalez’s contact details.
Long Beach Superintendent Jill A. Baker said in a letter to parents and staff that the officer would be “responsible for the standards set in his profession.”
Carrillo sent a letter to California Attorney General Rob Bonta on Wednesday requesting a state investigation. He also said he believed the officer should be arrested.
“This guy has nothing to do with a badge and a gun,” he said. “He shot an unarmed 18-year-old girl without justification.”
A demonstration calling for justice for Manuela Rodriguez was scheduled for Sunday in Long Beach.
His brother Oscar Rodriguez said on Friday that the family had not been involved in organizing the event.
“All I want is for him [the officer] to see what justice looks like, ”he said.
Todd Miyazawa contributed.