West Hollywood Sheriff's Deputy Arrested For Murder
A sheriff's deputy who works out of the West Hollywood Station has been arrested on suspicion of murdering a man while off-duty this June.
Francisco Gamez, 41, has been arrested in connection with the murder of Armando Casillas, 38, who was fatally shot in Sylmar on June 17 at 11:15 am, according to a release from the Los Angeles Police Department. Casillas died later at a nearby hospital. A second victim was shot at but was not injured, but Gamez was also arrested on suspicion of attempted murder. Gamez has been booked into the 77th Street Jail and is being held on $4 million dollars bail.
Law enforcement sources told the Los Angeles Times that on that day in June, Gamez was responding to his son, who had gotten into a dispute with someone. The deputy allegedly exchanged words with the victim from his car before firing. He then drove a short distance and allegedly fired his gun at a second victim though he missed.
The Times points out that a man who identified himself as Casillas' brother suspected that a sheriff's deputy was involved. The commenter wrote on a post back in August:
The Man who shot & killed my Brother Arnando, We think he is a L.A. COUNTY SHERIFF.he also shot and try to killed our nieghbor and witness but missed him as he moved out of the bullet way. when he was standing with my brother Armando , the reason we think he is a Sheriff is that he shouted to my Brother "L.A. COUNTY SHERIFF WHERE YOU FROM " as if the sheriff was in a gang or maybe he is.
Gamez has been working for the department for 17 years, and he was most recently working as a detective out of the West Hollywood Station, City News Service reports. He was relieved of duty on July 3 with pay while the investigation went ahead, and his pay has been suspended, Sheriff Lee Baca told CNS."The off-duty acts that led to the arrest of Francisco Gamez are deeply disturbing to me and to the entire Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department," Baca told CNS.