Breaking News Blog

Wednesday, Mar 19 2014 12:01 PM

Officers identified in last week's shooting in west Bakersfield

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    An ambulance leaves the scene of a shooting Friday evening near Stine Road where a man was holed up in a garage with the SWAT teams coming to the incident.

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    The Bakersfield Police Department SWAT armored vehicle was at the scene after Miguel Villanueva holed up in a garage in March and had a shootout with four officers.

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Bakersfield police have identified the officers involved in last week's shooting of a suspect who opened fire on both California Highway Patrol and Bakersfield police officers in west Bakersfield following a chase.

Police said the following were involved: Detective Chris Feola, 16-year veteran; Detective Mason Woessner, 14-year veteran; Senior Officer Jeff Martin, 8-year veteran; Officer Keith Cason, 5-year veteran. Martin was one of the first officers to respond to the scene, and Feola, Woessner and Cason were assigned to the SWAT team.

The suspect, Miguel Villanueva, remains in critical but stable condition, police said. The investigation is ongoing.

The incident started at about 3 p.m. Friday when a California Highway Patrol officer tried stopping Villanueva because he was using a cell phone while driving, police said. Authorities later learned the car was stolen.

The officer chased Villanueva, 29, from Belle Terrace and Castro Lane and ended up near West High. Villanueva crashed the car into a parked vehicle, and the CHP officer temporarily lost sight of him.

Police said Villanueva had fled into a detached garage in the 1000 block of McDonald Way, and several CHP officers responded to help find him. He fired at a CHP officer and nearly struck him, police said.

Bakersfield police then responded and the suspect fired at them. Police said at least one BPD officer fired back.

Several hours went by during which police tried to convince Villanueva to surrender. He refused, and SWAT officers shot and wounded him, police said.

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