Suspect in Ambush of LA Sheriff's Deputies Identified, Hit with Major Charges


Authorities have charged a man in connection with the ambush shooting of pair of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department deputies at a transit station in Compton earlier this month.

Deonte Lee Murray “has been charged with two counts each of [premeditated] attempted murder of a peace officer and possession of a firearm by a felon,” KCBS-TV reported.

The 36-year-old had been arrested on Sept. 15, three days after the shooting, in connection with an unrelated carjacking and shooting on Sept. 1.

Murray was linked to the shooting of the two deputies via forensic evidence.

“A ghost gun used in the shooting of the deputies was recovered by investigators, sheriff’s Capt. Kent Wegener told reporters,” KCBS reported. Murray fled the scene in the black Mercedes Benz sedan he allegedly carjacked on Sept. 1, according to Wegener.

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He was originally charged “with one felony count each of carjacking, second-degree robbery and assault with a semiautomatic firearm,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

Murray, who pleaded not guilty in the carjacking case, was expected to return to court in October for his next hearing in that case.

But he was suddenly ordered to court Wednesday morning, KNBC-TV reported, citing court and jail records.

Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey and Sheriff Alex Villanueva announced the new charges at a media conference.

“Too often, we take for granted the inherent danger present each and every time a law enforcement officer reports for work,” Lacey said.

The shooting of the deputies was captured on surveillance video.

The suspect walked up to the passenger’s side of the parked car the deputies were in and fired several times at close range.

Both deputies, a 31-year-old mother and her 24-year-old male partner, were wounded and taken to the hospital in critical condition.

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WARNING: The video below contains graphic violence that some viewers may find disturbing:

The deputies survived their wounds, and have since been released from St. Francis Medical Center.

Murray faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if he is convicted.

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith